A landmark of civic pride for Detroiters and an emblem of the city’s robust industrial heritage, Michigan Central Station is set to be restored to its former Beaux-Arts glory and transformed into a vibrant mixed-use center and downtown destination.

 
Quinn Evans Architects is leading the modernization of this iconic building for owner Ford Motor Company, creating more than 640,000 square feet of office, retail, and residential space.

Details

  • Restoration & Adaptive Use of an Iconic 18-story Beaux-Arts Train Station
  • 640,000 SF of Office, Retail & Residential Space
  • Centerpiece of Ford’s 1.2 Million-SF Campus in Detroit’s Corktown Neighborhood
  • Listed in the National Register of Historic Places
  • Federal Historic Tax Credits
  • Construction Completion: 2022 (Expected)

Past & Future Hub of Transportation

Built in 1913, the station was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975, but was abandoned in 1988. The towering building is in Corktown, Detroit’s oldest neighborhood, and was the fourth tallest building in the city when it opened and the tallest railroad station in the world. In one of the nation’s largest and most complex renovation projects, Ford plans to transform the building into the centerpiece of a new 1.2 million-square-foot campus that will serve as an innovation hub for autonomous vehicle design, helping to define the future of transportation.

QEA Team Project Kick-off Site Visit, 2018.QEA Team Project Kick-off Site Visit, 2018.QEA Team Project Kick-off Site Visit, 2018.QEA Team Project Kick-off Site Visit, 2018.QEA Team Condition Assessment, 2011.

  

“[Quinn Evans Architects] shares Ford’s passion for redeveloping Detroit’s landmark train station, ensuring the local community benefits from our presence and building the future of the transportation industry right here in Detroit.”

Todd Brooks 
Program Manager, Ford Land 
 

 

Ambitious Modernization That Honors Historic Legacy

QEA is combining carefully researched conservation efforts with contemporary design solutions to give the building new life as a state-of-the-art environment that honors its historic legacy. Laser scanning and 3D printing technology will support the replication of century-old details within the station’s interior, including molding, ornate plaster pieces, and figurines.  

The ambitious modernization and adaptive use project will be guided in part by the preservation requirements of the Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credits program. QEA will work closely with representatives of the local neighborhood, the State Historic Preservation Office, and the City of Detroit’s Planning Department. Construction is expected to be complete in 2022.

Southwest facade, 2018.Waiting room, 2018. Photograph by James Haefner.Waiting room entrance to concourse, 2018. Photograph by James Haefner.Interior looking out, 2012.Previous roof to concourse, 2012.Concourse, 2018. Photograph by James Haefner.Interior office floor, 2018.

Project in Progress

There is still a lot more to the story. Below is a list of selected news features and other media content that will be updated over the course of this project. Be sure to check back for developments. 
 
Creating Tomorrow Together: A Neighborhood Newsletter from Ford 
(Issue No. 1)
 
Ford Motor Company. March 2019. 
 
Detroit Train Station Revamp: Here's What Happens in Phase 1 
Allie Gross, Detroit Free Press. December 4, 2018. 
 
Ford Begins First Phase of Renovations at Michigan Central Station 
Max White, WXYZ Detroit. December 4, 2018. 
 
Ford Selects Restoration Design and Construction Partners for Michigan Central Station. 
Media Center, Ford Motor Company. November 8, 2018.