Beaumont to demolish shopping center at 13 Mile, Woodward
Royal Oak — Beaumont Hospital’s plans for the neighboring Northwood Shopping Center property are expected to be revealed over the next few months.
Beaumont spokesperson Colette Stimmell said demolition will come — likely this fall — after survey results and environmental studies of the 213,000-square foot shopping corner at Woodward and 13 Mile.
“Tenants have been given 90 day terminations on their leases but this is no surprise to anyone,” Stimmell said. “We felt now was the time to begin moving forward on its redevelopment. It has gotten a little tired looking and we want to have something more fitting for Woodward and the gateway into Beaumont.”
The shopping center, built in 1954, has gone through several facelifts over the years and was bought by the hospital in the 1980s, she said.
Royal Oak Mayor James Ellison said officials have known Beaumont “didn’t plan to run a shopping center forever and were just land-banking the property until it could be used for other purposes.”
“It’s been the city’s worst kept secret,” he said.
The shopping center houses about a dozen businesses, including Kroger; Office Depot; Dunham’s sporting goods store; Party City; Leo’s Coney Island and several medical supply related businesses. A former drug store site, used as a child care facility for hospital workers’ children, will be closed and moved to a former elementary school across 13 Mile, Stimmell said.
The hospital has indicated redevelopment could include some form of mixed-use of retail and services.
“Speculation is that there might be a hotel or some retail left at the corner and the hospital will build out on property directly behind it,” Ellison said. “It remains to be seen. I hope they consider using part of it for a transit center.”
Ellison and others are hopeful the hospital will consider public input on the site’s future. Stimmell said toward that end Beaumont is taking a survey of its 11,600 full and part-time employees and has received 2,800 responses.
“I’ve looked at some of them and in general, people are excited,” she said.
The survey — on what types of businesses would be a good fit at the location and how often responders shop there — has also been extended to city leaders and area residents, she said. All surveys must be completed by the end of this month.
The cost of demolition, expected to be completed by the end of the year, is pegged at $2.6 million, Stimmell said. Whatever redevelopment occurs would likely begin next spring, she said.
For more than a half-century, the shopping center was a popular stopping and meeting point for teenagers cruising Woodward, especially after the strip’s many drive-in restaurants closed for the night. Northwood had Cunningham’s, a 24-hour drug store where old-timers can recall being chased off the lot by police and security guards for “loitering” near vehicles.
Stimmell said in recent years Chrysler has staged Dream Cruise-related activities in the lot during the popular Woodward event held every August.
“They have raised thousands of dollars for charity and that is not going to change this year,” she said. “They will be using the parking lot again.”
Take the survey
Beaumont hospital is seeking community input on what types of development should follow the demolition of the Northwood Shopping Center at 13 Mile and Woodward. To take the survey, go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RO_Community.