Super green mixed-use rehab underway at 71 E. Garfield, expect occupancy by April

A significant historic preservation project is nearing completion in Midtown's Sugar Hill district, which is bounded by E. Forest, John R, E. Garfield and Woodward. The building, at 71 E. Garfield, was once a hotel and was recently ravaged by fire. It is currently under construction and is poised to literally emerge from the ashes as a super-green mixed-use complex of 22 live/work spaces geared towards artists and eight art studio/retail spaces. The grand opening is slated for April 2010.

The building is on track for Energy Star rating and to accomplish energy reduction below 50% of current ASHRAE standards. Solar power will offset 20 percent of the building's energy load and a geothermal system will provide heating and cooling. All appliances and windows are Energy Star, it is highly insulated and employs a white roof, which has proven to aid efficiency more than darker flat roofs. A 3,000 gallon cistern will collect water on the roof, recycled materials were used for flooring and reclaimed doors were used when possible.

Many of the apartments have an open floor plan, which will allow the artist residents to employ the layout to their best advantage. To demonstrate interior design possibilities, the building's April open house will showcase eight "dream lofts" designed by local artists -- including Model D's Walter Wasacz and Marvin Shaouni -- in collaboration with IKEA.

The units will rent for approximately $1.00 to $1.15 a square foot. Each, even the nonresidential ones, has its own geothermal pump for temperature monitoring. Common space includes the dramatic lobby, which was mostly spared the flames. "It's not quite the Book (Cadillac) or Fort Shelby, but it's pretty impressive," says Diane Van Buren of development consultant Zachary and Associates.

The development team on the project included developer Garfield Real Estate Properties LLC, Quinn Evans Architects, energy adviser Kelly Tinker and MEP Construction. The complex stream of funding sources for the $6 million project includes a Section 108 HUD Loan Fund, a City of Detroit Community Development Block Grant, New Economy Initiative funding and an assortment of tax credits: brownfield, federal and local historic and solar and geothermal federal. For more information about the project, contact Van Buren at at 313-831-6100.

Source: Diane Van Buren, Zachary and Associates
Writer: Kelli B. Kavanaugh
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