Possible Buyer for Uniroyal Site on the Horizon
The Uniroyal site has been an ongoing source of speculation for Detroiters for many years. The former site of a Uniroyal Tire Manufacturing Plant, the riverfront location has seeped with containments left behind after over a century of industrial usage.
The site has long been a hindrance to the appeal of the city’s riverfront skyline, but due to the complications presented by the previous use and the state of the land, the property has sat empty, wasting away into dilapidation. The city itself purchased the property from the Uniroyal company in 1981 for $5 million and has seen over $3.6 million in land clearing and decontamination efforts. Even with the heavy investments from local municipality, approximately only one-third of the site has been cleaned to date.
The 43-acre site has had many investors’ interest, but little seems to become of this peaked attentiveness. Everyone from Detroit-based DTE Energy co to Donald Trump have toured the area with considerations of utilizing the space, however the overall cost of remediating the area seems to drive many away.
There is hope on the horizon, though.
Speculation has been circulating that the property is currently in the sights of loyal Detroit supporter, Dan Gilbert.
Gilbert is the founder and CEO of the internationally recognized mortgage lending company, Quicken Loans. He is also the founder and chairman of Rock Ventures and the owner of several sports teams. Gilbert is also an avid Detroit investor and spends much of his own fortune purchasing, revitalizing, and rebuilding large sectors of the Metro area.
Sources close to the situation have stated that Gilbert’s investment team have been quietly discussing options with the City of Detroit. Five of the six sources have been unable to comment publicly regarding the deal due to the situation’s sensitive nature. The sixth, Steve Hoin—a geologist for the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality—did affirm a previous meeting with Gilbert’s representatives to discuss the potential complications and restorations the site presents.
Although the speculations are circulating, Whitney Eichinger, vice president of communications for Gilbert’s Rock Ventures, is refusing to acknowledge any such fact.
“The company does not comment on rumors and speculation,” said Eichinger.
News & Image Source: http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20170925/news/640186/gilbert-eyes-uniroyal-site-redevelopment-on-detroit-riverfront