When Dan Gilbert announced the purchase of the Serman's Building last June, we mentioned that the building's flat roof had 'Roof Deck' written all over it. Behold! Wishes do come true, or at least they become concept renderings. It will be exciting to see how Bedrock approaches this project. It may be one of Gilbert's smallest properties (12,800 square feet), but the location at Randolph and Macomb could go a long way towards linking Gilbert's Greektown with his investments on Broadway and Campus Martius.
Back to the rendering: As expected, the Serman's hooded awnings are all gone, as are the rooftop billboards. More importantly, we have a brand new storefront, and the rendering makes it clear that a restaurant tenant ("Urban Eatery!") is the goal. It's also worth noting that the interior upstairs looks like office space, as it would be odd to have a commercial roof deck above residential apartments.
That leaves us with three more questions:
⇢ What happens to the old Serman's mural on the Macomb-facing wall? It's pretty unique, and allowing it to fade naturally seems like a worthy tribute to a business that stuck it out in downtown Detroit for 96 years.
⇢ The ground floor seems too big for just one storefront. Is there another one facing Macomb?
⇢ When it comes to renderings, just about any vegetation is there to make the rendering look better, not as part of the actual design. But those window boxes do wonders for the flat, featureless facade. We volunteer to water the plants if they're actually installed.