The renewal of downtown Detroit is taking a monumental step forward with the official press release coming from
announcing its selection of the architects to lead the design process of the redevelopment of the two-acre former site of the historic Hudson's Department Store on Woodward.
Rock has selected world-renowned SHoP Architects
, headquartered in New York, for this project. SHoP will partner with Detroit-based Hamilton Anderson Associates
(HAA) for this significant downtown development.
"These two firms, known as premier urban catalysts, were chosen for their innovation and creativity, as well as their track record of committing to community engagement," said Jeff Cohen, Founder of Rock Companies LLC, a member of the Rock Ventures Family of Companies, in a press release. "We believe SHoP and Hamilton Anderson will join a long list of distinguished architects including Yamasaki, Burnham, and Kahn who have created landmark buildings in Detroit that stand the test of time."
The selection of SHoP came after Rock Ventures hosted a global architectural ideas competition for architects, designers, planners, artists, and the public this past March. The competition attracted more than 200 entries from across the globe and got people thinking about the possibilities of redeveloping this key site, in many ways both symbolically and geographically the heart of Detroit. You can view the entries here
Hudson's started out as an eight-story building in 1891 and eventually swelled into a 25-story building covering 2.2 million square feet. It closed in 1983. The building was imploded in 1998, leaving a quite literal gaping hole in Detroit. Plans to redevelop the site of such an iconic piece of the city's history feels like a real coming full circle, as symbolically relevant as it is concretely so.
While we're probably still years off from breaking ground and development beginning in earnest, SHoP, HAA, and Rock Ventures have exhibited a real commitment to getting this massive project off the ground. They will meet with local stakeholders in the next month and will host an informative community lecture series starting in 2014.
Source: Rock Ventures press release
Writer: Nicole Rupersburg