Downtown Detroit Under Armour opening in spring 2017

Under Armour will open a 17,000-square-foot store on Woodward Avenue downtown this spring

Ian Thibodeau
The Detroit News

Under Armour will open a 17,000-square-foot store downtown this spring.

Kevin Plan (left), CEO and Founder of Under Armour, and Dan Gilbert, founder of Quicken Loans and Detroit real estate mogul, announced Under Armour would open a 17,000-square-foot store in downtown Detroit in the spring of 2017.

Dan Gilbert's Bedrock officials said Saturday night the internationally-recognized sports brand will fill a storefront on the corner of Woodward Avenue and State, directly across from the former Hudson's site, which Gilbert, Quicken Loans Founder and owner of Bedrock, plans to erect a new, massive building on by 2020.

"Under Armour is excited to open its first Brand House in downtown Detroit in the spring of 2017 at 1201 Woodward Ave. Detroit is an ideal location for Under Armour as an icon of Americana," Bedrock and Under Armour said in a joint statement. "Just like Under Armour’s hometown of Baltimore, Detroit is currently experiencing an unprecedented wave of momentum, and we can’t wait to be part of their exciting success story.”

Under Armour is the most recent major retailer to set its sites on downtown Detroit. Nike opened a 22,000-square-foot store just a few storefronts away from the future Under Armour location over the summer, and popular eyewear brand Warby Parker will open a small store roughly a block and a half away on Nov. 26.

The new athletic store will sit a block away from the future Shinola Hotel announced earlier this fall.

The 1200 block of Woodward is the heart of what Gilbert and Bedrock have been working to transform into a major regional retail strip. The former J.L. Hudson department store could be seen as the district's heart awaiting resuscitation. It’s a location at which Gilbert has said he wants to “make an iconic statement.”

Early designs released last year for the Hudson’s site show a swooping glass-and-metal structure that looks like nothing in Detroit now. The space will have 250 residential units, 225,000 square feet of mixed-use commercial or retail space, as well as a “programmed civic space,” according to public records.

Gilbert is a major force in downtown Detroit. Entities connected to Gilbert and his Bedrock real estate have invested $2.2 billion since 2010 in buying and renovating more than 90 Detroit properties mainly in the city’s downtown.

He's currently working on plans to assume control of the 15.5-acre site of the unfinished jail site downtown from Wayne County in order to build a $1 billion Major League Soccer stadium and entertainment venue on the site despite recent approval granted to the county to proceed with construction on the halted project.

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Twitter: @Ian_Thibodeau