Plan would convert Metropolitan Building into apartments in Detroit

The Metropolitan, center. By Steve Neavling
The Metropolitan, center. By Steve Neavling

Metropolitan Building

Just two months ago, city officials expressed serious concern about the fate of the 15-story, gothic-style Metropolitan Building after a large chunk of the exterior crashed onto the roof of a pickup truck.

Now Detroit’s Downtown Development Authority is negotiating the sale of the 89-year-old building to a group of developers who want to build 60 high-end apartments with commercial and retail space on the lower floors.

Metropolitan Development Partners has already begun stabilizing the building at 33 John R., which originally housed jewelry retailers, dealers and manufactures. The facade restoration is expected to cost about $300,000, according to the DDA.

Under the ownership of the DDA, the Metropolitan has fallen into disrepair and is regularly open to trespassers, who have vandalized the building. Its ornamental facade has been shedding and is covered graffiti.

The news comes on the same day that developers announced plans to renovate the Old Wayne County Building.

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.

  • Gary

    $300,000 seems like a real low figure to fix the exterior of the building. Are you sure it isn’t $3,000,000?

  • Marian Pyszko

    Detroit needs jobs or a flood of immigrants 200,000+ to create demand…

    • ryanguard

      Plenty down in Texas…..LOL!

      • Marian Pyszko

        🙂 Given a choice, would the illegals in Texas be willing to live in Detroit for 7 years if they could get citizenship? Or is Detroit so bad that even “desperate” Central Americans would turn down the offer if the catch was to live in Detroit?

        • Sean Thomas O’Neal

          There are thousands of Mexican immigrants living in Detroit, and Detroit is thousands of miles from Texas, and the Mexican border…figure that at out!

          • Marian Pyszko

            Detroit’s Mexican population is leaving and heading downriver; see the 2010 census. 6.8% Hispanic is very low by big city standards. Detroit also has one of the lowest foreign born population percentage among big cities as well. What Detroit needs is an influx of immigrants at once. A few Mexicans living in the southwest side isnt going to improve Detroit much at all..