PNC Bank to finance $57.3M project at Marygrove Conservancy

PNC Commitments Continue Historical Collaboration with The Kresge Foundation to
Benefit Marygrove Conservancy
PNC Bank and The Kresge Foundation today announced on January 18, 2022 that they will commit $57.3 million in financing to support the conversion of the Liberal Arts and Immaculata buildings on the Marygrove Conservancy campus into K-12 facilities for the School at Marygrove. 

The historic buildings which once were the sight of college classes will now be home to K-12 students as part of the continuing evolution of the evolving P-20 educational continuum funded by The Kresge Foundation on the site of the former Marygrove College in Northwest Detroit.

“Over the years, PNC and the Kresge Foundation have collaborated on a number of significant efforts to benefit Detroit and Wayne County residents, including $2.5 million in joint grants to support improvements in early childhood education facilities in Detroit in collaboration with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation,” said Ric DeVore, PNC regional president for Detroit and Southeast Michigan. “This transformational project, which will serve hundreds of school-aged children and their families, will play a significant role in revitalizing and providing critical resources to the Livernois-McNichols community.”

The investment will be made through a unique combination of lending and tax credits to support the Marygrove Conservancy as part of the bank’s Main Street banking model which is built around understanding and supporting the unique needs of its local communities. 

Established in 2018, the Marygrove Conservancy is a nonprofit organization that manages operations and stewards a 53-acre campus in Northwest Detroit, the site of the former Marygrove College. 

The campus is being designed in collaboration with the surrounding Livernois-McNichols community as an educational, economic and civic anchor in its revitalization. The continuum ultimately will span prenatal to Pre-K, in the Marygrove Early Education Center, operated by Starfish Family Services; K-12 in the School at Marygrove under Detroit Public Schools Community District in collaboration with the University of Michigan School of Education; post-secondary graduate education; and wrap-around services and community engagement programs. At full capacity, the school will serve roughly 1,000 Detroit children and their families, primarily living in the Livernois-McNichols neighborhoods.
Conservancy CEO Tom Lewand notes, “PNC’s support of the groundbreaking P-20 educational ecosystem is a vital part of Marygrove’s transformation into a campus for the community. Partners like PNC help make access and opportunity to the many assets at Marygrove available to children and families around campus and throughout the city.”

“This project is a testament to partnerships between institutions and the surrounding community,” said Kresge President and CEO Rip Rapson. “The engagement of PNC to provide financing for the ongoing development of the Liberal Arts Building is assurance that the Marygrove P-20 project will continue to move ahead at full speed.”

Kresge is a primary funding partner of many of the conservancy’s initiatives. 

Additionally, as part of its $500 million Grow Up Great initiative, the PNC Foundation provided the conservancy with a $40,000 grant to support the state-of-the-art Marygrove Early Education Center, which opened for 144 children and their families in September. 

This year, kindergarten classes will open on campus in the renovated Immaculata High School/Bates Academy building, and the school will see its first graduating class in spring 2023.

In addition to supporting the children of the Livernois-McNichols community, PNC will place a 30-foot mobile “branch on wheels” to provide financial products and services to people in the local community. The mobile branch addresses another significant community need – access to banking and financial resources.

“PNC Bank is bringing tremendous value to the community,” said Racheal Allen, COO of the Marygrove Conservancy. “We are thrilled to deepen our relationship with this investment and expand access to financial literacy, education and banking resources on campus.”
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Read more articles by Biba Adams.

Biba Adams is a regular contributor and project editor for Model D. Formally Model D's Editor at Large, she is a longtime journalist whose work is fueled by her passion for people and her native Detroit. Find her on all social channels @BibatheDiva.