A prominent, recently renovated building in Corktown is about to get some high-profile tenants. The Factory in Corktown, on the corner of Michigan Avenue and Rosa Parks Boulevard, will house over 220 Ford employees in autonomous vehicle and electric vehicle business and strategy teams starting early next year.
According to a press release, the move is looked at as an opportunity for the teams to immerse themselves in an urban environment with mobility challenges. The team—led by Sherif Marakby, Ford vice president of autonomous vehicles and electrification—is working both on the development of electric vehicles and increasing partnerships with companies related to mobility.
Ford’s first autonomous vehicle is planned for production in 2021.
“We’re excited to choose this inspirational location in one of Detroit’s resurgent neighborhoods to accelerate our work on electric and autonomous vehicles,” said Jim Hackett, Ford president and CEO. “This move and our exciting Dearborn campus transformation are important steps as we move toward our aspiration to become the world’s most trusted mobility company—designing smart vehicles for a smart world.”
The 45,000-square-foot building dates back to 1907 and has been home to he Chicago Hosiery and Detroit-Alaska Knitting Mills factories. Most recently, it’s been the headquarters for Buhl Sport Detroit and Brothers Tuning Detroit, which will continue to use the space as Ford Land tenants.