It hasn't even been a month, but he's back for more: High-rise kingpin Dan Gilbert is said to be on the cusp of purchasing Downtown Detroit office tower 1001 Woodward. If you didn't know better, you might assume that Gilbert, already bored with his last five-building binge, peered out his office window last week and decided to buy the first visible building not already part of the Gilbert Empire. But that is not the case here--this address was actually considered as a potential headquarters for Quicken Loans a few years back. It's remained relatively obscure since being passed over, mostly known for its giant "Outsource To Detroit" banner. So what's inside?
Built in 1965, 1001 Woodward is known for its sweeping views and great location on Campus Martius, though it has a rocky past involving low occupancy levels and a failed conversion to condominiums just a few years ago. Originally known as the First Federal Building, only 30% of the 283,000 square-foot building was occupied by 1999. The owners at the time invested $20M into renovating the building (hence its current Class A status) and converting the building to condos. Few were interested in buying the condos and the conversion was postponed. Fast-forward to 2008, when Greektown businessman Dimitrios "Jim" Papas bought the building for the clearance price of $5.4M, eventually raising occupancy levels up to 67%. He's the one selling to Dan Gilbert, and he's guaranteed to walk away from this deal feeling pretty good about his bank account balance.
Jim Papas said he's hoping to get this deal done by the end of the month. This building comes with parking garage sporting 758 spaces, bringing the Gilbert parking meter up to 4,258 total spaces. Oh, and that doesn't include the planned 1,300 spaces at the Z-Site. We'll let you know the moment this deal finalizes.
· Dan Gilbert Goes Wild, Buys 5 Downtown Buildings [Curbed Detroit]
· Dan Gilbert sets sights on another downtown Detroit skyscraper [Detroit News]
· RUMBLINGS: Gilbert still on a buying binge [Crain's]