In a move to revitalize the city, Ecorse officials have approved plans to redevelop the former Mill Street industrial site on the city’s waterfront with a mix of housing, entertainment, restaurants, and recreation.
Officials see the Mill Street project as a crucial part to help position Ecorse as “the place to be on the Detroit River.”
“The Mill Street Redevelopment is a turning point in our city’s history,” says Rich Marsh, Ecorse city manager. “We are excited to further implement our vision for an Ecorse that will thrive throughout the 21st century and beyond. What we do today is not only for our enjoyment and benefit, but for the security of our children and grandchildren.”
The Mill Street site is located with proximity to the present and future Canadian border crossings, the I-75 and I-94 highways, and near numerous major automotive supplier operations sites. Specifically, the site bordered by Mill Street to the north, River Drive to the west, the Detroit River to the east and North Road the Ecorse River to the south.
Ecorse City Council approved the request for proposal submitted by General Development Co. and Friedman Real Estate. Together, the companies have formed Premier Properties to operate and manage the site as it emerges.
Once completed, the property will generate “significant” tax revenues, and the companies who locate there will create jobs for the community, according to city officials who estimate the redevelopment will generate nearly 1,200 jobs and bring in roughly $900,000 in annual tax revenues with an estimated $10,000,000 in retail sales.
Marsh says distribution and light manufacturing jobs are important because they are accessible to a wide variety of people and offer an upwardly mobile career path. He says these jobs in turn will spur further economic activity within the city as the workers on the site shop, dine, and choose to settle within the area.”
While the site has many benefits, officials acknowledge it also comes with its share of challenges, including: environmental remediation, brownfield redevelopment, and landfill management.
The city also has pledged itself to honor and respect the historic nature of the surrounding neighborhoods and the unique natural environment that is adjacent to it.