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Developers sought for Eastern Market housing development and food-processing facility

Candice Williams
The Detroit News

Developers are being sought for two Eastern Market district sites in Detroit: a mixed-use project with housing, and a food manufacturing facility with office space.

The City of Detroit and the Detroit Economic Growth Corp. said Tuesday they are seeking proposals from a developer for a mixed-use, mixed-income housing development on nearly one acre of vacant land at 1923 Division at the northeast corner of the Dequindre Cut Greenway. The development could offer up to 125,000 square feet of residential space.

Developers are being sought for two Eastern Market district sites in Detroit: a mixed-use project with housing, and a food manufacturing facility with office space.

The second project will be on a nearly 3.5-acre site at 1540 Wilkins on the southeast corner of Riopelle. The DEGC is seeking developer proposals for a new food manufacturing, production and distribution facility with commercial office space and a multi-story public parking deck. 

The housing development along the Dequindre Cut will help create a model for future development along the greenway, Donald Rencher, director of Detroit's Housing and Revitalization Department. "That’s why we’re looking for catalytic projects that include sustainable design principles; incorporate ground-floor commercial space; provide mixed-income housing; and take advantage of its location on the Cut to offer publicly accessible space."

Developers are expected to have mixed-use development expertise and be committed to setting aside at least 20% of the residential units for households making at or less 80% of the area median income, city officials said. The project should also incorporate walkable urban design.

The second project will be on a nearly 3.5-acre site at 1540 Wilkins St., on the southeast corner of Riopelle. 

DEGC is seeking developer proposals for a new food manufacturing, production, and distribution facility with commercial office space and a multi-story public parking deck. 

The Wilkins Street project is part of an ongoing effort to increase food production and distribution, a key factor in the city's Eastern Market Framework Plan whose purpose includes driving $70.9 million in private investment into the district, creating nearly 500 jobs and retaining nearly 300 jobs in the local food sector.

"Using the Eastern Market Neighborhood Framework Plan as our North Star, DEGC is seeking developers that are committed to elevating the market’s future by respecting the fundamental elements of Eastern Market and surrounding neighborhoods — authenticity, equity, connectivity, density and diversity," said Kenyetta Hairston-Bridges, DEGC executive vice president.

A pre-submission conference for the mixed-use development will be at 10 a.m. Sept. 9 via Zoom at https://cityofdetroit.zoom.us/j/97903311476. Proposals are due by 5 p.m. Oct. 30. Those interested in the request for proposal can visit https://detroitmi.gov/departments/housing-and-revitalization-department

/developers-and-contractors.

A pre-submission conference for the food production development will be held at 10 a.m. Sept. 30 via Zoom at https://zoom.us/j/91249116181. Proposals are due by 10 a.m. Dec. 16. For information, contact Catherine Frazier, cfrazier@degc.org.