5,000-plus expected at Ford train station event Tuesday

Ian Thibodeau and Daniel Howes
The Detroit News
Big Sean performs a free show in celebration of his new album "Double or Nothing."

Roughly 5,000 people registered in advance to attend Ford Motor Co.'s big show Tuesday morning outside Michigan Central Depot. Many more are expected to watch and listen to the event from outside of the gates as Ford celebrates its purchase of the long-vacant train depot in Corktown.

Detroit rapper Big Sean will make an appearance on stage, multiple sources with knowledge of the plans told The Detroit News. He's expected to do a short performance, then offer remarks at some point during the event that begins at 11 a.m. event. The Detroit Children's Choir is also expected to perform.

The event is open to the public, though to get inside the fence erected around a stage set up in Roosevelt Park immediately north of the station, attendees must have RSVP'd in advance. No further reservations are being taken.

Later this week, the company wants to take people inside the building before it starts construction. Ford will host an open house at the station this Friday through Sunday.

Free tours run from 1-6 p.m. Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

The performances and open house are the latest step for Ford's community outreach in Detroit. The automaker plans to poll the community regarding what community members want to see inside the train station's public space. Restaurants, retail spaces, coffee shops and markets are expected.

Ford plans to redevelop the train station by 2022 as an anchor to a new Corktown campus, which is expected to bring 5,000 workers to the neighborhood.

The building will anchor a Corktown campus Ford plans to fill with 2,500 of its own employees connected to the company's ventures in self-driving cars, electrification and transportation strategies for the future. The campus will also have room for an additional 2,500 people affiliated with Ford's technology partners.


Twitter: @Ian_Thibodeau