Demolition Begins On Ford Auditorium

DETROIT – On July 8, 2011, demolition began on Ford Auditorium. Under the leadership of Mayor Dave Bing, administration officials successfully advanced the demolition of Ford Auditorium, a project that had been stagnated for decades.

“The demolition of the Ford Auditorium is another step forward for the City of Detroit, the city’s downtown and the emerging waterfront,” said Mayor Dave Bing. “We have seen great improvement to the waterfront and are now presented another opportunity to increase access to the river.”

Funded by bond dollars the demolition of Ford Auditorium will cost approximately $780,000.

Detroit based, Adamo won a competitive bid to demolish Ford Auditorium. Adamo will utilize the most state-of-the-art technology available in the demolition industry, including the Apex 70 Ultra High Demolition Excavator, a machine developed mainly for demolition. The demolition of Ford Auditorium will mark the first time the Apex 70 is used in the United States.

Originally built in 1955 and opened in 1956, the 56-year-old Ford Auditorium was once the home of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Historic speeches from Malcolm X and Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. took place at Ford Auditorium. Vacant since 1989, Ford Auditorium’s acoustic difficulties proved too difficult to overcome.

The Aeolian-Skinner organ, original to Ford Auditorium was dismantled by volunteers and donated to the congregation of St. Aloysius Catholic Church, which hopes to have the 2,800-pipe instrument installed and operational by 2013. A smaller 1,200 pipe organ, which operated from the same console, has been given to the DSO who will use it to perform 17th and 18th century pieces in Orchestra Hall.

The Bing Administration has made eradicating blight a top priority and has demolished over 3,000 dangerous and abandoned residential structures throughout the city. Mayor Bing is committed to demolishing a total of 10,000 abandoned residential structures by the end of 2013.