Historic Detroit Free Press Building Opens Residential Leasing, Includes Rooftop Pool

The former Detroit Free Press Building in downtown Detroit will take on a new name when it opens next month following its conversion into 105 residential apartments along with numerous amenities. The building is being developed by Bedrock, the full-service real estate group owned by Dan Gilbert.
The Press/321
The Press/321, formerly the Detroit Free Press Building, will open next month and offer 105 apartments. // Photo courtesy of Bedrock

The former Detroit Free Press Building in downtown Detroit will take on a new name when it opens next month following its conversion into 105 residential apartments along with numerous amenities. The building is being developed by Bedrock, the full-service real estate group owned by Dan Gilbert.

The historic structure, designed by renowned Detroit architect Albert Kahn, will be called The Press/321 (321 W. Lafayette Blvd.). The apartments range from studios to three-bedroom units and will be complemented by the Midwest’s first fully automated parking system, a rooftop pool with a sundeck and gas grills, and a state-of-of-the-art fitness center.

Other amenities will include a community work lounge, a conference room, fiber internet, and bike storage. Each apartment will offer expansive windows, stainless steel appliances, an accent wall, and picturesque archways. Studios start at $995 with move-ins beginning in mid-October of this year.

“We could not be more thrilled to welcome residents into The Press/321 property and bring life back to one of Detroit’s architectural gems, which has sat vacant since 1998,” says Jonathan Mueller, director of residential development at Bedrock. “Our priority was to uphold the aesthetic elements of the Albert-Kahn building while tailoring the living experience for our future residents.”

Constructed in 1925, The Press/321 originally served as the in-house production facility for Michigan’s oldest newspaper — the Detroit Free Press. The redesign of the 14-story, 250,000-square-foot limestone building was overseen by Bedrock’s in-house architecture team in tandem with Detroit-based Kraemer Design Group.

An outdoor rooftop pool on the seventh floor will be completed later this year and will be ready for the spring 2021 season. Designed with Mythra Pools, the swimming facility will have a stainless-steel structural base with soft foam flooring.

In addition, Bedrock partnered with Dasher Lawless and AUTOParkit to develop the Midwest’s first fully autonomous garage in the basement of The Press/321. The build out of the garage will be complete mid-2021 and will be available for residential and commercial use.

For more information on residential leasing at The Press/321, please see here.

Bedrock is offering a sneak peek with live virtual tours of The Press/321 and the City Modern development in Brush Park as part of official programming for the 10th annual Detroit Month of Design (in September). The free tours will offer the public an insight into the design, construction, restoration, and apartments of each property as well as delve into the storied history of each location.

City Modern is a mixed-use development in Brush Park, located north of Comerica Park and Ford Field. The project offers four renovated Victorian mansions and 20 newly designed residential buildings.

One of the City Modern buildings, 2660 John R., is currently leasing and recently opened up its doors for its first residents to move in. In turn, Hamilton Anderson Associates in Detroit tapped into the city’s industrial and mid-century modern heritage to design 440 Alfred — the next property that will open for leasing later this fall.

Bedrock officials, local architects, property experts, and community members will narrate the tours, sharing personal anecdotes and details about the properties.

“The Brush Park Historic District and the old Detroit Free Press Building hold a special place in the heart of Detroiters, and we are excited to have the opportunity to show them how we have transformed these locations,” said Melissa Dittmer, chief design officer at Bedrock. “Not only can potential residents get a sneak peek into their future home, but architecture enthusiasts, former Brush Park residents and all others who are interested will hear from experts on how these projects were made possible.”

Those who tune in to the free event will hear from the following narrators, each who have touched the projects in unique ways:

The Press/321

  • Alan Cobb, president and CEO, Albert Kahn Associates.
  • Laura Mitchell, project architect, Kraemer Design Group.
  • Stephen Henderson, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and former Detroit Free Press journalist.
  • Tiff Massey, interdisciplinary Detroit artist.
  • Geoff Sleeman, construction project director, Bedrock
  • Jaimee Pachala, interior designer, Bedrock
  • Jake Chidester, director of design, Bedrock

The live virtual tour of The Press/321 will take place on Tuesday, Sept. 22, from 6-7 p.m. Those interested may RSVP for free here.

City Modern

  • Maurice Cox, former Detroit planning director and current commissioner, Chicago Department of Planning and Development.
  • Mona Ross-Gardener, Brush Park resident, small business owner and chair of Brush Park Community Development Corp.
  • Betsy Williams, senior architect and director of design, Hamilton Anderson Associates.
  • Lorcan O’Herlihy, founder and design principal, Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects.
  • Melissa Dittmer, senior vice president and chief design officer, Bedrock.
  • Andrew Bodley, senior project designer, Bedrock.

The live virtual tour of City Modern will take place on Thursday, Sept. 25 from 6-7 p.m. Those interested may RSVP for free here.

The hour-long tours will include a bespoke cocktail and mocktail recipe, based on the building, that viewers can make at home while enjoying the experience. A Q&A session will take place at the end.

For more information on residential leasing at City Modern, please see here.

Detroit-based Bedrock is a full-service real estate firm specializing in acquiring, developing, leasing, financing, and managing commercial and residential buildings. Since its founding in 2011, Bedrock and its affiliates have invested and committed more than $5.6 billion to acquiring and developing more than 100 properties, including new construction of ground up developments in downtown Detroit and Cleveland totaling more than 18 million square feet.

Bedrock’s real estate portfolio consists of 210 office tenants and 125 retailers and restaurants in Detroit’s technology-centric downtown, the majority of which are new to the market. Key office tenants include Coyote Logistics, IBM, Microsoft, Quicken Loans, LinkedIn, StockX, Universal McCann, UBS, Ally Bank’s national headquarters and Fifth Third Bank’s regional headquarters. Key retail tenants include H&M, Plum Market, The Lip Bar, 6 Salon, Lululemon, Shake Shack, and many others.

Bedrock is currently developing four transformational projects including the Hudson’s Site, Monroe Blocks, Book Tower renovation and One Campus Martius expansion.

Click here to view a complete timeline of Bedrock and the Rock Family of Companies’ engagement within the Detroit community.