This month, the Detroit Brownfield Redevelopment Authority (DBRA) and the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC) are seeking preliminary redevelopment proposals for the Stone Soap Building. Located in along the city's east riverfront, the property made up of three separate structures with adjoining walls once housed the Stone Soap Company, a Detroit business still in existence today, though operations have moved to Sylvan Lake. The DEGC, which also oversees redevelopment of the old Tiger Stadium site, is looking for the "most responsive proposal" from qualified bidders for a mixed-use redevelopment to include retail and residential spaces. Given the building's prime location, the property seems to have enormous potential.
According to the development report, Stone Soap's western wing and middle section both went up in 1907, while eastern part of the structure was added between 1927 and 1929. Consultants and architects hired by the DBRA found the building structurally sound, apart from the wood floors. They also recommended extensive restoration to the building's once-handsome (now heavily tagged) red brick façade. The western wing offers roughly 44,649 square feet of space, the central section has 14,036 square feet, and the eastern part of the structure has 24,684 square feet.
Though urban explorers who've toured the place (um, unofficially) describe the structure as in pretty dilapidated shape, the original brick walls and arched windows remain. Given the building's stunning river views and prime location, this could be the Detroit loft condo development to end all condo developments. An informational pre-bid meeting about Stone Soap will be held on August 6 at 11 AM at the DEGC's Griswold Street offices. A site tour takes place the same day from noon until 2 pm. Bidders have until 3 pm on August 31 to submit proposals.
·New Tiger Stadium RFP: Mixed-Use Development and Baseball [Curbed Detroit]
·Request for Qualifications and Proposals for Redevelopment of the Stone Soap Building [Detroit Economic Growth Corporation]
·DBRA Seeks Proposal for Adaptive Reuse of Stone Soap [Detroit Economic Growth Corporation]