Detroit — The former Wurlitzer Building, which city officials once called one of downtown's "most dangerous structures," is under contract to be sold for $1.1 million, according to a commercial real estate database.
The historical building, at the corner of Broadway and John R, has been vacant since 1982. The building once housed the Wurlitzer Co., maker of organs, pianos and jukeboxes. The narrow structure, built in 1926, is across the street from the Detroit Opera House.
Washington, D.C.-based real estate information service CoStar Group is reporting the 14-story building is under contract to be sold to an unnamed buyer.
The building is currently owned by 1509 Broadway LLC, whose managing member is attorney Paul Curtis. He couldn't be reached for comment Wednesday. Jerome Eagger, principal of Detroit-based Summit Commercial LLC, which represents the current building owners, said Wednesday he could not comment.
The city has cited owner Curtis several times since October 2008 with emergency violations, including crumbling bricks on the building's facade and a dangling fire escape. In 2011, a 40-pound chunk of stone fell off and went through the roof into a neighboring building.
In late 2013, a Lansing group signed a purchase agreement to buy the building for $1.2 million. But that group backed out of the deal months later. As part of that failed deal, Detroit's Kraemer Design Group, an architect and design firm, inspected the Wurlitzer twice.
The roof had been damaged, which has caused water damage, and scrappers have stripped much of the interior, according to the firm. But the building was structurally sound, the firm found, and estimated it would likely take somewhere between $8 million to $10 million to renovate the Wurlitzer.