Broderick Tower shows off Detroit roots in rebirth

When JC Beal Construction President Fred Beal showed off the almost renovated Broderick Tower during the Detroit Tigers Opening Day last week, he wasn't just showing off the downtown Detroit skyscraper's second lease on life. He also tipped his hand to how much stakeholders in the city have rallied to make that rebirth possible.

A majority of the co-investors in the $50 million project, all working under the Motown Construction Partners umbrella, are Detroit residents. One of the lead banks playing a key role in financing the project is longtime Detroit staple Comerica Bank. The project was designed by Kraemer Design Group, a growing downtown Detroit-based architecture firm. Of the 34-story building's three marquee penthouse units, one is going to a executive at Quicken Loans and another is taken by a venture capitalist who already calls Detroit home.

"We have been very successful in leasing," says Fred Beal, president of JC Beal Construction and one of the co-developers of the Broderick Tower. "It started with the most expensive units."

So far 50 percent of the building is leased, and Beal expects the rest of the skyscraper's 127 apartments to be taken by the time it opens this fall. He attributes the quick fill-up to a combination of the sharp demand for high-end housing in the city's center and the skyscraper's historic character, location and sweeping views of the city.

Residents will be enjoy a range of views ranging from a straight line of sight down Woodward to the Detroit River, a backyard of downtown skyscrapers, inside Comerica Park, the city's sprawling green neighborhoods and even Canada. They will also have access to a number of downtown amenities such as the city's sports stadiums, restaurants, concert venues, parks and burgeoning nightlife.

"When we started this project there was nothing going on," Beal says.

The Broderick Tower was built in 1928 and first served as an office building for health-care professionals, such as doctors and dentists. It went vacant in the 1980s and became one the city's iconic ruins, serving as a playground for urban explorers. Renovation efforts have started and stalled over the years until Motown Construction Partners began swinging hammers last year. It will turn the first two floors into a combination of restaurant/wine bar/beer garden. The third, four and fifth floors will become office space.

Motown Construction Partners have also worked extensively to maintain the building's historic character. The ornate entry way on the ground floor will be preserved and restored to its former grandeur. The apartments will also feature a finished look that would be consistent with the look of the medical offices, making the spaces more Park Shelton finished than Willy's Overland Lofts raw.

For more information on leasing an apartment or office space at the Broderick Tower, click here.

Source: Fred Beal, president of JC Beal Construction
Writer: Jon Zemke

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