CREW Detroit Announces 10th Annual IMPACT Award Winners

Prestigious Awards Celebrate SE Michigan’s Commercial Real Estate Successes.

BLOOMFIELD HILLS — Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Detroit, an organization influencing the success of the commercial real estate industry by advancing the achievements of women and celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2011, announced the winners of its 10th annual IMPACT Awards at a luncheon held today at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills. The IMPACT Awards, among the most prominent honors in the Greater Detroit commercial real estate community, recognize recently completed, multi-disciplinary projects in Southeast Michigan that demonstrate a significant, positive impact on the communities where they are built. Projects are awarded in three categories: new development, redevelopment and special impact. 

The winner in the new development category is the University of Michigan North Quad Academic and Residential Complex in Ann Arbor. Completed in May 2010, the living and learning environment encompasses 360,000 square feet of housing, dining, academic, common and office space. It is designed to enhance spontaneous interaction and create an unmatched atmosphere for creativity and communication and features include international programming, innovative technology and advances in sustainable design. Walbridge served as construction manager and worked closely with Robert A.M. Stern Architects (design architect), Einhorn Yaffee Prescott Architecture & Engineering (architect of record) and the University of Michigan’s Architecture, Engineering and Construction Departments.

The winner in the re-development category is The Durant in Flint. The former hotel was built in 1920 with General Motors founder, William Durant, a major investor. Included on the National Register of Historic Places, it is one of Flint’s most historically important and architecturally significant buildings. Redeveloped and opened in August 2010, The Durant is 140,000 square feet and now houses 93 apartments and office and retail space, retains a historic lobby and ballroom for events, and offers a courtyard and adjacent parking garage with direct access to the building. Kraemer Design Group served as the architect, the general contractor was Buildtech LTD and the developer is Karp and Associates. 

The winner in the special impact category is the Surnow Building in Birmingham. The Surnow Building is the former home of a U.S. Post office and is also included on the National Register of Historic Places. It now serves as a 20,000 square foot, multi-tenant office space and boasts modern features such as common conference rooms and dining areas, a three story open glass center stairway and indoor bike storage. Maintaining its historic legacy, the Surnow Building retains the original wood floors and ceiling and a historic mural. The building redevelopment was designed by Biddison Architecture and Design; construction management services were provided by Ronnisch Construction Group.

Reflecting on the winning projects, IMPACT judge Carl Roehling, President and CEO, SmithGroup, offered the following.

“The quantity of the projects submitted is clear evidence that we are not dependent upon a single heroic civic project to signal a turnaround in our region,” explains Roehling.  “And the winners prove that a commitment to a creative and quality project drives positive change in our community. We need more just like them.”

This year’s IMPACT Award winners were selected from fourteen contenders.  To be considered for inclusion, all projects entered for consideration had to involve at least one company with a CREW Detroit member and had to have been completed between January 1, 2010 and June 29, 2011. Project criteria are broad and include innovative design and/or construction, environmental consciousness, creative use of existing materials, sensitive land use and social/economic significance.  In addition to the winners, 2011 IMPACT award submissions were:

·         Quicken Loans, Detroit
·         Cranbrook Kingswood Girls Middle School, Bloomfield Hills
·         General Dynamics Land Systems/ MC2, Sterling Heights
·         Detroit Wayne County Port Authority, Detroit
·         The Salvation Army Pontiac Corps & Wallace Holland Community Center, Pontiac
·         Emagine Theater, Royal Oak
·         Marysville High School –  Marysville
·         Midwest Medical Building at Dearborn Town Center –  Dearborn
·         First Step, Wayne
·         Shain Park, Birmingham
·         University of Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor

According to CREW Detroit member and IMPACT Awards Chair Eileen McCarthy, Vice President at McCarthy & Smith Construction Services, the IMPACT award’s tenth year and CREW Detroit’s 25th anniversary in 2011 are further validation of the leadership roles that women are playing in the region’s largest and/or most notable projects.

“With at least one CREW Detroit member involved in each of the 14 projects submitted, the IMPACT awards reflect that women and CREW members in particular are playing a significant role in the most vibrant and promising developments in the region’s commercial real estate community.” 

In addition to Mr. Roehling, judges for the 2011 Impact Awards were: Dan Duggan, Real Estate Reporter, Crain’s Detroit Business; Joan Cleland, Executive Vice President, Acquest Realty Advisors, Inc.; Jill Ferrari, Director of Community Development, Wayne County EDGE; Larry Marantette, President & CEO, Taktix Solutions; Tim Kay, Senior Vice President, National Director, Jones Lang LaSalle; and Michael Smith, Executive Vice President, AGC of Michigan.

About CREW Detroit

CREW Detroit (, founded in 1986, is a dedicated to influencing the success of the commercial real estate industry by advancing the achievements of women throughnetworking and member-to-member driven business opportunities. It is a founding chapter of CREW Network, a professional organization of more than 8,000 women and men in commercial real estate in the U.S. and Canada that serves as a key resource to CREW chapter members and the commercial real estate industry.  CREW Network members hail from all disciplines of commercial real estate and represent every type of expert required to “do the deal.” Learn more at