Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2007 Book Cadillac Story Makes Front Page of Wall Street Journal Previous Next
Top of pageBottom of page

Mrjoshua
Member
Username: Mrjoshua

Post Number: 1364
Registered: 03-2005
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 8:32 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

GOING DOWNTOWN
A Developer Bets on Detroit
By Giving Old Hotel a Facelift

Mr. Ferchill Fought
For Investors, Tax Breaks;
Eisenhower Slept Here

By MIKE SPECTOR
June 1, 2007; Page A1
The Wall Street Journal

DETROIT -- This city's auto industry currently faces a historic meltdown. The real-estate market is so distressed that many houses here are cheaper than cars. A population flight to outlying suburbs -- a trend that began four decades ago -- continues, rivaling the exodus from hurricane-ravaged New Orleans.

Detroit's Downward Slide:
http://online.wsj.com/public/resources/documents/info-Detroit_chrtbk0705-16.html?printVersion=true

So why is an out-of-towner named John Ferchill betting on a $180 million plan to turn an old hotel here into a deluxe destination with four-star rooms and luxury condominiums?

Since 1984, the 33-story Book-Cadillac hotel has stood gutted and abandoned on a downtown block surrounded by dormant storefronts and vacant buildings. Mr. Ferchill plans for it to open in the fall of 2008 as a 455-room Westin. The top eight floors will house 67 upscale condo units, most of which have already been sold. Penthouses commanded as much as $1 million.

A 65-year-old developer from Cleveland who specializes in risky markets, Mr. Ferchill has made a fortune restoring historic buildings in troubled cities such as Buffalo and Pittsburgh. But downtown Detroit is his most audacious bet yet.

"I've got a lot on the line here," says Mr. Ferchill, whose company has assumed more than $80 million in loans and other debt associated with the project. "I'm counting on the city of Detroit reviving itself in a manner that nobody expected to happen."





Last year, Detroit posted one of the highest unemployment rates in the nation, at 13.7%. Rampant crime, crumbling residential neighborhoods and troubled schools have long plagued the city.

But Mr. Ferchill thinks the start of a turnaround is already under way, as the city's new ballparks, casinos and multimillion-dollar housing developments have begun to lure more tourists and investors.

Many view the Book-Cadillac as a bellwether for any possible downtown revival -- especially for the city's long-neglected west side. "The Book-Cadillac more or less tests the water as to whether or not a significant renewal will take place," says John Mogk, an expert on Detroit history who teaches land-use and urban development at Wayne State University's law school.

Brothers J.B., Frank and Herbert Book opened the property in December 1924. The spot: the site of the old Cadillac hotel, which had been named for Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, a French fur trader who founded Detroit in 1701.

At the time, Detroit was thriving and home to a new booming auto industry. The city's richly ornate, Gilded Age architecture had earned it the nickname "Paris of the West." With their hotel, the Books wanted to transform downtown's Washington Boulevard into a kind of Midwestern Fifth Avenue. It was Detroit's tallest building and the tallest hotel in the world.

The Book opened amid huge fanfare. More than 2,000 guests descended and 3,000 more had to be turned away. Large crowds spilled onto Washington Boulevard when celebrities arrived, Eleanor Roosevelt and the New York Yankees among them. The hotel's lush Venetian lounges and ballrooms were main draws, places to be seen in and hold important meetings.

On May 2, 1939, Lou Gehrig, suffering from unexplainable weakness and decline in his play, pulled Yankees manager Joe McCarthy aside in the Book-Cadillac's lobby. The two headed to Mr. McCarthy's room, where Mr. Gehrig told his manager he intended to sit out that afternoon's game against the Detroit Tigers. The decision ended Mr. Gehrig's consecutive-games-played streak at 2,130.

In 1951, the Sheraton hotel corporation bought the Book, renaming it the "Sheraton-Cadillac." Among its guests: Presidents Truman, Eisenhower and Kennedy. Sammy Davis Jr. and Frank Sinatra met at the hotel for the first time there, historical preservationists say.

For two decades, business in both the city and the hotel remained robust. But even during the 1950s and 1960s, changes were taking place that would precipitate decline. Interstate highways began to cut through downtown neighborhoods. Obsolete manufacturing plants couldn't be expanded in the city's industrial areas because they backed up against crowded neighborhoods. So factories moved to Detroit's outskirts.

Middle-class residents fled the city after violent race riots in the late 1960s and stopped coming downtown to see lawyers, doctors and other professionals. Detroit tried to rescue its scarred downtown in the late 1970s with the construction of four office towers, known as the Renaissance Center. But most of the complex's success came from peeling away businesses from the city's west side, near the Book-Cadillac. The unintended effect: Many west-side buildings were emptied, and restaurants and other businesses there declined. The Book suffered, too. It changed ownership several times between 1975 and 1980, when occupancy rates slumped.

http://link.brightcove.com/services/link/bcpid452319854/bctid959746378
The Journal's Mike Spector tours Detroit's new makeover and explains how the Book-Cadillac will be ambitiously remodeled to test a new market for downtown living.

The Book-Cadillac was barely clinging to life in 1980 when California Gov. Ronald Reagan visited the hotel during the Republican National Convention. By this time, a series of ownership changes had restored the hotel's name back to the "Book." Amid plummeting demand, the hotel shuttered in 1984. The city devised various plans to redevelop the hotel, but none stuck. A consortium of private investors bought the Book, but left the hotel idle.

By the early 1990s, demand for commercial space remained weak and millions of square feet downtown sat either vacant or minimally occupied. Subsequent attempts to draw businesses and residents to the city center never quite took off.

The city regained control of the Book in 2001, but determined it was too expensive to save and slated it for demolition. When Kwame Kilpatrick became mayor the following year, however, he ordered officials to try to find developers for as many abandoned historic buildings as possible.

Despite its fragile state, Detroit has always been a serious sports town, and centrally located. Visitors have easy access to the Motor City via highways and bridges that reach Michigan suburbs, Windsor, Ontario, and parts of Ohio. Eventually, investors -- such as Mike Ilitch, the owner of the Tigers who built a new baseball stadium for the team in 2000 -- decided to test the downtown market. Although devoid of modern amenities, the area was attractive because of its location and entertainment potential.

In recent years, Detroit has attracted $435 million in investments to develop rundown buildings and other properties. As host to the 2006 Super Bowl, the city beautified its Campus Martius Park, which sits in the center of downtown. A residential neighborhood on the city's east side covering 88 acres will eventually boast more than 300 new homes. Plans are also under way for scores of new condominiums on the city's waterfront, with investments totaling more than $500 million.

According to a recent Brookings Institution report, about 5.6 million people visit downtown Detroit each year for sports games and other events, such as concerts and conventions. "If we keep a quarter of those people in the city overnight...it really shouldn't be hard to fill this hotel," says Chris Ferchill, Mr. Ferchill's son and business associate.

Mr. Ferchill stumbled into real estate in the late 1970s after a stint with a local phone company. He eventually founded the Ferchill Group in 1978, and started working on subsidized housing projects. Over the years, the company shifted to office buildings before devoting most of its time to renovating historic buildings.




A 1936 lithograph of the Book-Cadillac hotel in Detroit

In parachuting into what he calls "second tier" markets, Mr. Ferchill's strategy is usually the same. First he identifies cities that appear to be on the cusp of resurgence -- often giving extra points to those with new baseball parks, which tend to spur growth in the entertainment sector. He then pinpoints voids in the upscale housing and hospitality markets, targeting historic properties in hopes of rallying various public and private players to help fund their costly rehabilitations.

He first tackled Detroit in 2003 by building a Hilton Garden Inn, a midpriced, 198-room hotel in the downtown business district. The hotel, one of few in the area, boasts a healthy occupancy rate of about 70%. He also set his sights on the Book-Cadillac.

The city, though, had first tapped another developer: Historic Hospitality Investments, a subsidiary of Kimberly-Clark Corp. It had already earned a reputation as a publicly traded company committed to restoring dormant historic structures. Mr. Ferchill felt he could do a better job. He told city officials to "call me when they fail."

In late 2003, unable to arrange the necessary financing, Historic Hospitality pulled the plug. "There were a number of difficulties with the project that would have made it uneconomically viable in our view," a Kimberly-Clark spokesman says. "It just was not coming together."

Detroit next turned to Mr. Ferchill. He committed $4 million in equity to the project, plus about $8 million for start-up costs such as market studies and architectural designs. He also courted local officials to arrange a complex web of more than 15 public and private investors, including Meijer Inc., the Midwestern grocery-store chain.

About $24 million came from two of Detroit's pension boards, which cover both the city's general retirement system and police and fire funds. At first, the boards were skeptical: Mr. Ferchill had not yet secured all the hotel's financing and the pension shepherds were concerned about their risk exposure. "We didn't want to be the first one to jump into the project," recalls Jeffrey Beasley, Detroit's treasurer and a member of both pension boards.

But Mr. Ferchill obtained letters of commitment from other investors and made the deal more palatable by allowing the pension boards to put up money as loans and secure a small ownership stake in the hotel. Most important, Mr. Ferchill made sure the general retirement board would be a "second tier" investor -- second in line to get its money back in the event of foreclosure, behind only a $50 million loan from iStar Financial Inc., a real-estate financing company.

One of Mr. Ferchill's biggest challenges came when Meijer threatened to withdraw its promised $7.4 million after state politicians eliminated a key tax credit it expected to claim. Days before lawmakers' summer recess, the Ferchill Group successfully lobbied legislators, and then the governor's office, for special concessions. The result: a new law preserving the tax-credit for Meijer and others, keeping the company's investment in the deal.

In another coup, Mr. Ferchill landed millions by placing a conservation easement on the Book-Cadillac, which forbids him from building more condos atop the hotel's existing structure. The move allowed Mr. Ferchill to write off the estimated forgone profits as a charitable gift and pass the tax benefit to other partners. Attracted by the prospect of receiving a large portion of those tax benefits, National City Corp., the big bank chain, agreed to invest more than $28 million in the Book-Cadillac.

Some in Michigan doubt that new hotels and condos can return the city to greatness. "It will never, ever be the same as it was in the heyday of Motown," says L. Brooks Patterson, a native Detroiter and chief executive of nearby Oakland County, a prosperous suburb. "Detroit didn't fall from grace overnight and there isn't going to be a silver bullet that slays the bad-news dragon."

But Mr. Ferchill is gambling he can find older empty nesters and young professionals who "want to be in the middle of the action," he says. Many have yearned to live downtown for some time but couldn't find the right place, he says.

One of them is Bob Bartlett, a 49-year-old divorcee who just bought a $1 million penthouse, sight unseen. Mr. Bartlett's new three-story home, once it's completed, will feature a spacious entryway, two bedrooms, two-and-a-half bathrooms and a view of the city skyline.

Mr. Bartlett, who is moving from a nearby, affluent suburb, exults at the opportunity to live just steps away from what he calls the city's "hidden gems": small jazz clubs, local bodegas and well-regarded restaurants like Twingo's and Mosaic. He'll be a short distance from the Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit Symphony Orchestra and three professional sports venues. "It's just so much in the hub of things," says Mr. Bartlett, an insurance-industry consultant. "Watch out, Chicago."

Shortly after the Book-Cadillac deal, another developer approached Detroit officials to build a separate condo project on top of the hotel's adjacent garage. David Di Rita who says his Detroit company has sold about half of the yet-to-be-built units, including penthouses for as much as $800,000, said the Book-Cadillac "accelerated the notion that the [downtown] Washington Boulevard area could sustain high-end residential, restaurants and shops."

"It's no accident that [the mayor] talked about the Detroit Tigers and the Book-Cadillac hotel" in his recent state of the city address, Mr. Ferchill says. "These are the two things" that are going to bring Detroit back, he says.

Write to Mike Spector at mike.spector@wsj.com
Top of pageBottom of page

Emu_steve
Member
Username: Emu_steve

Post Number: 318
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 8:45 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Quote from WSJ:

"But Mr. Ferchill thinks the start of a turnaround is already under way, as the city's new ballparks, casinos and multimillion-dollar housing developments have begun to lure more tourists and investors. "

Good to know that WSJ readers world-wide know what this forum posters know.
Top of pageBottom of page

Thejesus
Member
Username: Thejesus

Post Number: 1325
Registered: 06-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 9:05 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

wonderful article...
Top of pageBottom of page

Ptpelee
Member
Username: Ptpelee

Post Number: 18
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 9:38 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

This article really shows how much better written the WSJ is than our own local papers
Top of pageBottom of page

Kslice
Member
Username: Kslice

Post Number: 49
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 10:56 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hey, the Detroit Free press is better than about 90% of paper in this country. Of course the WSJ is a national paper and will be the best.

What happened to all those other nice builds that were around it?
Top of pageBottom of page

6nois
Member
Username: 6nois

Post Number: 289
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 10:57 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The article really makes L. Brooks sound bitter over the fact that Detroit may find some success. Its funny.
Top of pageBottom of page

Iheartthed
Member
Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 864
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:01 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

^I wonder why LB was the only local official quoted...
Top of pageBottom of page

Jt1
Member
Username: Jt1

Post Number: 9247
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:05 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

^I wonder why LB was the only local official quoted...



I would think with OC's economic might decreasing, foreclosures up, unemployement up,etc that LBP would have more important things to worry about than getting his name in the paper.

Patterson is one of the biggest impediments to regionalism. If he and some members of city council just disappeared there's a chance this region could actually see some level of cooperation.
Top of pageBottom of page

Thejesus
Member
Username: Thejesus

Post Number: 1327
Registered: 06-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:06 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"I wonder why LB was the only local official quoted..."

because there is a sinister world-wide conspiracy to make Detroit seem like a violent, decaying city...oh wait...

btw, L. Brooks is right...it won't happen over night

(Message edited by thejesus on June 01, 2007)
Top of pageBottom of page

Jt1
Member
Username: Jt1

Post Number: 9248
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:09 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

While I liked the article I would hope that the future resident doesn't honestly believe his quote "Watch out, Chicago."

I hope he loves living downtown but let's be realistic.
Top of pageBottom of page

Iheartthed
Member
Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 865
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:13 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"because there is a sinister world-wide conspiracy to make Detroit seem like a violent, decaying city...oh wait... "

Ya think so? Interesting perspective.
Top of pageBottom of page

Iheartthed
Member
Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 866
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:18 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

LB's comments are just showing that his relevance in the local political scene is waning, IMO. His open skepticism is becoming increasingly outdated, especially in a region currently in such dire straights. Who wants such a Debbie Downer as a leader?

How often do they elect OC Exec's? He probably won't run for another term.
Top of pageBottom of page

Jt1
Member
Username: Jt1

Post Number: 9249
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:25 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

thejesus - It seemed like an honest question. Why the need to be a condescending prick? I agree that it won't happen overnight but he states

quote:

It will never, ever be the same as it was in the heyday of Motown



Pretty bold statement. The problem is that LBP doesn't want it to ever be the way it was nor does he ever do a thing to help the city in any way shape or form regardless if it is the best thing for the region. If I am wrong and he does help the region or the city in anyway feel free to point out example.

When you point out that his role is to represent only OC remember that OC does not exist in a vacuum and the attitude of 'only me' at the city, county level has had as much to do with the state's current situation as the demise of the auto companies.
Top of pageBottom of page

Dan
Member
Username: Dan

Post Number: 1406
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:35 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"What happened to all those other nice builds that were around it?"

Actually most of those buildings are still there. The view is looking south at the east side of Washington Blvd.
Top of pageBottom of page

Thejesus
Member
Username: Thejesus

Post Number: 1329
Registered: 06-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:36 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

jt1:

it's all a matter of perspective, so what LBP has done to help out the region isn't something we can really debate...

for example, I thought his opposition to Wayne County's plan to update Cobo was helpful to the region...but most of you just look at such a move as obstructionism, and you don't even consider that Wayne's proposed addition to Cobo was going to cost $1 billion (which is ridiculous), nor do you consider that L. Brooks has stated time and time again that Cobo is a hugely important regional asset and that we must update it and expand it in the near future...his own proposal to hold a state-wide referendum to add a mini-casino to Cobo is also a better (and cheaper) proposal than what Wayne County put on the table...

I'm not necessarily even a fan of LBP...I just hate how you guys love to hate him so much, and never give him credit when he does something favorable to you (like preventing Wayne County from running wild spending $1 billion on a Cobo expansion that should cost half that amount)
Top of pageBottom of page

Jt1
Member
Username: Jt1

Post Number: 9250
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:41 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Cobo aside let's hear something positive he has done for the region.

I will give him Automation Alley. Beyond that he has done nothing for the region. One example of anything would help.

You still didn't answer the question why you were unwilling to just have a civil reply to an honest question.

If there is an article about positive development in OC would it make sense if KK was the only politican to be quoted? You also didn't respond to the fact that LBP makes a blanket statement that "It will never, ever be the same as it was in the heyday of Motown" when you were defending him for saying that it can't turnaround with one project.

LBP is an impediment to regionalization just as city council is. The problem is that you would rather focus on what posters here say than what LBP does.
Top of pageBottom of page

El_jimbo
Member
Username: El_jimbo

Post Number: 192
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:45 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thejesus,

If you are a supporter of the city and the region, as a public official, you do NOT tell a national news publication with a worldwide reading audience that you don't think Detroit will ever come back! Think of the message that sends to the rest of the world. Why would anyone want to invest in an area where even the politicians don't think it has a chance?
Top of pageBottom of page

Iheartthed
Member
Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 869
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 11:46 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Just a quick interjection, I think the major opposition to LB's proposal is that it would 1) require another casino, 2) be privatized. That is if I'm recalling correctly...
Top of pageBottom of page

Mackinaw
Member
Username: Mackinaw

Post Number: 2841
Registered: 02-2005
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 1:07 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Front page of the WSJ is HUGE. Millions of well-read, intelligent people who may not have known about this or the extent to which Detroit is upswinging now do.

Thanks Mrjoshua for the post, but this time, you were actually beaten to the punch by a late-night post from member Cww.
Top of pageBottom of page

Cambrian
Member
Username: Cambrian

Post Number: 1138
Registered: 08-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 1:20 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Excellent! Let us hope others are ambitious enough to apply the Ferchill formula to other Detroit Landmarks.
Top of pageBottom of page

Track75
Member
Username: Track75

Post Number: 2538
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 2:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

What LBP said is objectively true.

1. Detroit will never be the same as it was at its peak. I don't see Detroit gaining 1.2 million new residents or dominating the residential, retail, commercial, industrial spheres of SE MI.

2. The city declined for a long time. Recovery won't happen overnight, despite new condos/hotels This is simply common sense.

The reporter is the one who decided to contact LBP. The reporter decided which of his comments to quote in the article. Perhaps the reporter wanted to include some non-rah-rah view and LBP was a natural choice.

Or maybe LBP just wants to piss in your Cheerios. Y'all make it pretty easy for someone to tweak you.
Top of pageBottom of page

Jt1
Member
Username: Jt1

Post Number: 9257
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 2:55 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

It doesn't tweak me it just reinforces my belief that LBP is a douchebag.

But again, does it make sense that he is the person quoted?
Top of pageBottom of page

Track75
Member
Username: Track75

Post Number: 2539
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 3:09 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Sounds like a question for Mike Spector, the reporter.
Top of pageBottom of page

Rocket_city
Member
Username: Rocket_city

Post Number: 278
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 5:23 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yah, I too am getting...no wait...have always been sick and tired of LBP's "can't do" attitude. It's too bad that's the tone of Oakland County leadership when the rest of the region is focusing on the "can do".

Maybe it has something to do with Oakland County's mere existence being owed almost completely to Detroit and though the tables probably will never fully turn, there is evidence of some of that as Detroit is pulled up by national recognition and national attitudes...i.e. Ferchill.
Top of pageBottom of page

Irish_mafia
Member
Username: Irish_mafia

Post Number: 916
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 5:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

LBP sits at the right hand of God.

He has brought more jobs to Southeast Michigan than any poster that has commented here.

Automation Alley has been a huge success for OC and now the rest of the counties that have jumped on board.

Sure there are people in the city that feel that they should get the money from the pockets of the OC taxpayer... and he gets the opportunity to tell them to blow off.

I wish those of us in Wayne County who pay for that criminal enterprise called the Detroit Public Schools could do the same thing... but we can't.

So we just sit back and admire the work that LBP does and hope, for the sake of the region that more people try to emulate him.
Top of pageBottom of page

Detroit_stylin
Member
Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 4184
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 7:29 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Emulate him? As in using race baiting and fear mongering tactics to remain in power? Or maybe take the occasional evening drunken drive?


That's alright. I like the way Kilpatrick is handling things as is...
Top of pageBottom of page

Rrl
Member
Username: Rrl

Post Number: 835
Registered: 12-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 7:34 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Say what you want to about LBP being a shrewd county executive, you can't deny however that he is divisive...

...and therefore a cancer on the health of the region.
Top of pageBottom of page

Detroit_stylin
Member
Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 4185
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 7:37 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

But hey he brings Jobs to Oakland County....











....and makes sure that the people that need them the most have it hard as hell trying to get to them.
Top of pageBottom of page

Bumble
Member
Username: Bumble

Post Number: 114
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 7:37 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

As in using race baiting and fear mongering tactics to remain in power?



Because city council, the mayor, and his politician parents would never, never do such a thing.

The vitriol sent LBP's way is mindboggling in its simplicity and stupidity. I'd be a smug bastard too if I got to watch the village idiots blather on aimlessly and without consequence at how well I did my job.
Top of pageBottom of page

Detroit_stylin
Member
Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 4186
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 7:44 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

No no one brought up anything about they city clowncil or any other City official. That jackass (in this case the jackass would be you since no one was referencing your ass so you decided to jump in and take his bullet like a dumb ass hero)was in response to the idolization that is constantly bestowed on L Crooks Patterson by irish "i wish iwishiwashardenufftobeina" mafia as if he is the second coming of the messiah...

I spit it exactly as it was. And he had been doing it for YEARS before our current gang of fuck ups on City Council ever came on the scene (way back in the mid 70's).

Now try that "but Detroit Officials do it toooooooooo" bullshit again...
Top of pageBottom of page

Bumble
Member
Username: Bumble

Post Number: 115
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 7:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

When that pinched little brain of yours fails you DS, do you always hurl insults?

LBP has been antagonizing poor Wayne county for years? Really? Like from the 70s? Wow.

It might then be a measure of civilized behavior that the mayor, his politician parents, and city council didn't engage in the same race baiting politics. I'm sure that distinction is lost on you.

Barbara Rose Collins was first elected in Detroit in the early 70s. She and L. Brooks go way back. Dumb.
Top of pageBottom of page

Eric
Member
Username: Eric

Post Number: 843
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 7:53 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

Sure there are people in the city that feel that they should get the money from the pockets of the OC taxpayer... and he gets the opportunity to tell them to blow off



Yeah and this perverted view of regionalism that you and LBP share is why Metro Detroit is dysfunctional mess.
Top of pageBottom of page

6nois
Member
Username: 6nois

Post Number: 291
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 8:01 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The problem in LBP plan for COBO is that the rest of the state will not approve that. The rest of the state views Detroit, and Detroit Metro, as overly wealthy and sucking money that should go to the disadvantaged areas. It will never pass. COBOs best bet is to be done on a regional level, because it doesn't affect the rest of Michigan.
Top of pageBottom of page

Detroit_stylin
Member
Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 4187
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 8:02 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Numb nuts...let me say this slow so even an idiot (someone slightly smarter than yourself) can understand because I don't know how to dumb it down any further.

Now look and read this again...sound every syllable out if need be...

quote:

Emulate him? As in using race baiting and fear mongering tactics to remain in power?



Now a little history lesson for my cognitively challenged friend. LBP at some point in time acted as an attorney representing people in OC who did not want the dirty city people being bussed in their school districts or vise versa. He had basically used that in order to build the constituency that keeps him in office and that constituency still has that same divisive mindset to this day. Now once again we are talking about something that has been occurring for well over a 30 year period. Name me one current city official (current being the operative word and other than Young) that has done the same thing over the same period of time with any semblance of clout that L Crooks wields...

Hey if it helps I'll even hum the Final Jeopardy theme to help you think of an answer...
Top of pageBottom of page

Bumble
Member
Username: Bumble

Post Number: 116
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 8:13 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Barbara Rose Collins. But, hey, I already pointed that out.

Then again, you can insert almost any current Detroit politician in your historical summary and come up with the same result.

Well, except that most Detroit politicians are ineffectual, which is why LBP gets the simpleton's goat.

As the teacher used to say, "Dismissed!"
Top of pageBottom of page

Eric
Member
Username: Eric

Post Number: 844
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 8:25 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

BRC is nowhere near as influential as Brooks.
Top of pageBottom of page

Detroit_stylin
Member
Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 4190
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 8:31 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I know right Eric...that is why I made sure that I included that in my statement because I knew the usual suspects would grasp for straws and try to grab anything...
Top of pageBottom of page

Mackinaw
Member
Username: Mackinaw

Post Number: 2842
Registered: 02-2005
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 8:36 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I blame LBP's comments for what has happened on this thread. Here we have a fantastic positive spotlight for Detroit, and because LBP has to be a debbie downer, and give us Detroit lovers something to sink our teeth into, now we are arguing in spite of this positive development. Too bad.
Top of pageBottom of page

Mrjoshua
Member
Username: Mrjoshua

Post Number: 1366
Registered: 03-2005
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 8:58 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thank you, Mackinaw. I do not believe people grasp the importance of such an incredibly positive article being printed on the front page of the WSJ. There is one paragraph quoting a naysayer and that's all most forumers want to focus on. Seems representative of Detroiters frequently being their own worst enemy.
Top of pageBottom of page

Bumble
Member
Username: Bumble

Post Number: 117
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 9:43 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yeah, if we were all always positive we'd have millions of people living in a thriving city. Never underestimate the power of positive thinking, especially when you don't live here. Thanks for playing Mackinaw.

Yes, we know BRC is an ineffectual turd. Detroiters have voted for her sorry ass since the early 70s, and that doesn't say much about their presence of mind, that's for sure. Makes her nearly 40 years of race baiting to stay in power all the more pathetic, doesn't it? She gets a pass, LBP gets the vitriol. That's cool. Player haters abound. It's just jealousy.
Top of pageBottom of page

Eric
Member
Username: Eric

Post Number: 845
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 10:01 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

This really has less to do with LBP's actual comments than his past divisive history. No one here thinks this project or any other in the city is some silver bullet. But LBP hasn't been a very good team player over the years, I think that's why some have taken such offense over the comments. When you've been one of the one biggest roadblocks to regional improvement, people might be slightly pissed that you have the nerve to say anything negative about the city. Especially, when you've blocked some of the very initiatives that could help it.


(Message edited by eric on June 01, 2007)

(Message edited by eric on June 01, 2007)
Top of pageBottom of page

Eric
Member
Username: Eric

Post Number: 846
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 10:30 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

She gets a pass, LBP gets the vitriol. That's cool. Player haters abound. It's just jealousy.



Riiight cause what we all know what an hugely popular figure BRC is around this place. Some of us don't have our heads so far up LBP ass that we can cleary see both are useless.

(Message edited by eric on June 01, 2007)
Top of pageBottom of page

Karl
Member
Username: Karl

Post Number: 7817
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 10:43 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Don't mind DS - he's on his eternal mission for reparations. Blaming govt, whites, corporations, others - in other words, anything but the problem (and this applies anywhere there are problems, not just Detroit) which is:

what goes/doesn't go on in the homes

Bill Cosby has a great message for Detroit homes. But Detroit (at least part of Detroit) prefers to tell Cosby to get lost because his message doesn't include the "r" word.
Top of pageBottom of page

Detroit_stylin
Member
Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 4191
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 10:46 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Karl don't you have an anti-abortion/ anti-black rally to go to somewhere...
Top of pageBottom of page

Karl
Member
Username: Karl

Post Number: 7818
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Friday, June 01, 2007 - 10:58 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Nah, just trying to give the white guy investing money/time in the Book his due.

Perhaps you could too.
Top of pageBottom of page

Croweblack
Member
Username: Croweblack

Post Number: 40
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 12:47 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

70% occupancy at the Hilton-Garden?

Now that is funny.

"Bob Bartlett"

2nd time he has been mentioned in an article regarding the Book.

There is no way a developer would be referencing someone just for the sake of hype? no way, that could never happen, no way.

Is bartlett somehow connected to the ferchill group? No. He is just another suburbanite that wants to live the urban lifestyle.

That can't lead to thinking of other idiots "well if he is going to put a deposit down on a million dollar condo I should put a deposit down on 300 grand condo!"

The guy that put together the recent deal of the lease by illitch of the masonic temple laughs at the hotel expansion of detroit. Every current study says its a bad idea. Tax credits make it a viable risk. Without them, no deals would happen.

Supply and demand will rear its ugly head once again.

What happens then?

Take off the rose colored glasses off for once--What happens if these projects don't take off?
Top of pageBottom of page

Mackinaw
Member
Username: Mackinaw

Post Number: 2852
Registered: 02-2005
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 12:51 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Uh, then you have a masterfully-restored old building with plenty of inherent value. If the hotel is too big (referencing the over-supply you suggest we'll see), then it can be downsized and more condos created. We know that residential demand in core areas of the city will be growing.

Can you refute the statistics regarding the Hilton? I thought that downtown as a whole was averaging over 50 percent, and The Hilton is well-located and a decent deal, so 70 makes sense to me.
Top of pageBottom of page

Croweblack
Member
Username: Croweblack

Post Number: 41
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 1:16 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"masterfully-restored old building with plenty of inherent value"

or

a restored building which sits empty

I love "inherent value", that is priceless.

do you write for model D?

As far as the hilton--
can't reference anything right now (no scanner) but just think about it--to get 70%

On monday, tuesday, wednesday, thursday, sunday the hotel would have to have 60% occupancy and on friday and saturday would have to be sold out--100%.

not happening in a market (state wise) which is last place on occupancy rates.
Top of pageBottom of page

Karl
Member
Username: Karl

Post Number: 7819
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 1:33 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Well, if nothing else the roof will be fixed, the mechanical systems are working and the place is secured.

"Oh ye of little faith...."
Top of pageBottom of page

Professorscott
Member
Username: Professorscott

Post Number: 408
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 1:36 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Unless you know what the occupancy is, Crowe, you are blindly guessing.

I live far to the northeast of Detroit. In the city nearest where I live, there are three places to spend the night: a motel and two "B&B" type places. The motel and one of the B&Bs are nearly always at 30% or less; the other B&B is at 100% almost every night. So you can't guess at what a specific inn is doing based on local averages.

To be more general, it is impossible to extrapolate from the general to the specific. Or, as the saying goes, I know a man who drowned standing in a river that was three feet deep on average.

The article, if we can go back for a minute to the supposed topic here, just shows that there are some visionary people right now who are willing to take a bet on Detroit.

I'm amazed that this thread very quickly devolved into an argument about the Honorable L. Brooks Patterson. Brooks represents the thinking of the 1960s and 1970s, which is what got us to where we are today. To say that Oakland County is successful is an interesting analysis; I know quite a few people trying unsuccessfully to sell houses in this "successful" County for less than they paid for them half a decade ago.

When my stepfather died of cancer twenty years ago, God rest his soul, an interesting observation he made near the end was that his arms and legs were both totally cancer-free but that was not helping him any. So goes Oakland County, a cancer-free arm in this region. Just IMVHO.
Top of pageBottom of page

Mackinaw
Member
Username: Mackinaw

Post Number: 2854
Registered: 02-2005
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 8:51 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Croweblack, if there were every a time to pick on the optimists, this is not it. The Book-Cadillac is going to be a healthy, occupied building for a long, long time after 2008.

By inherent value, I mean the value of the building itself as an asset. Clearly it had some value even in a dilapated state, enough to get Ferchill to act on it. It will have millions more in worth when it is a functioning modern building, and apparently restored to emulate the 1920s product.

Maybe I should get a job at Model D. And you can get one as assistant to LBP.
Top of pageBottom of page

Bumble
Member
Username: Bumble

Post Number: 118
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 9:05 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

Riiight cause what we all know what an hugely popular figure BRC is around this place. Some of us don't have our heads so far up LBP ass that we can cleary see both are useless.



She's one of many, and DS wanted someone who's been around as long as LBP to prove his tiny point. Ecco BRC!

The mayor, his mother and father, are among the worst of the race baiting lot, and they do it to stay in power. DS has a problem with this from LBP because he's been around since the 70s. He doesn't have the same problem with the Kilpatricks because, I guess, they've only been around since the 80s.

And let's not forget that folks up in here are fawning over the mayor these days. They think the leopard has changed his spots.

I can't wait for a new round of lynching ads in the next election.
Top of pageBottom of page

Iheartthed
Member
Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 880
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 2:33 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Automation Alley a success? Seems to me the region has been bleeding jobs (and companies) nearly almost since it's inception.

An organization comprised of companies that ALREADY existed here, btw. That place is nothing more than a sign on the highway.

It might help it a little if it weren't sprawled over hundreds of miles with no centralization.
Top of pageBottom of page

Gdub
Member
Username: Gdub

Post Number: 1110
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 3:06 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Nice to see a high-profile shout-out for Twingo's, and Mosaic, btw.
Top of pageBottom of page

Bob
Member
Username: Bob

Post Number: 1476
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 3:42 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I just have to laugh everytime you drive and go to a different county, they are an Automation Alley county. Of course OC has to have in big letter "HOME OF." I am waiting till you put into Mackinaw and it says "An Automation Alley County." It seems to be travelling out from OC.
Top of pageBottom of page

Citylover
Member
Username: Citylover

Post Number: 2369
Registered: 07-2004
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 3:57 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

In a just world LBP would become Mayor of Detroit and whip it into shape.By any measure he had been a far greater success than any Mayor Detroit has had in the last forty years.

To those that are concerned the status quo might be upended on the forum fear not; Detroits problems almost intractable in nature are of no concern; crime , murder, the continuing loss of population have not contributed to the cities decline..........nope it's LBP and his divisive tactics.......you all are sad.
Top of pageBottom of page

Karl
Member
Username: Karl

Post Number: 7827
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 4:11 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

CL's post is spot on.

Unfortunately, Detroit's present problems evolve more from inside the home than elsewhere, and w/the COD's attitude toward folks like Bill Cosby, those problems won't be ending anytime soon.
Top of pageBottom of page

Gdub
Member
Username: Gdub

Post Number: 1111
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Saturday, June 02, 2007 - 7:39 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I wouldn't disagree with CL, to an extent, but LBP's clownish (yeah Kwame's one too, blah, blah) divisiveness plays right into the hands of the steady stream of unqualified people running for office in the COD, making it that much easier for unproductive candidates to play the race card for votes.
Top of pageBottom of page

Eric
Member
Username: Eric

Post Number: 847
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Sunday, June 03, 2007 - 12:32 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

To further bring the thread back on topic, another positive outcome from the BC and Fort Shelby has been the upgrades taking place to existing hotel space. The renovation at Pontch and Days Inn will make us a much more competitive market
Top of pageBottom of page

Emu_steve
Member
Username: Emu_steve

Post Number: 322
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Sunday, June 03, 2007 - 9:28 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Quote of a quote:

"I agree that it won't happen overnight but he states


quote:
It will never, ever be the same as it was in the heyday of Motown "

*************

This is almost common sense.

How many rust belt cities like Detroit, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, etc. will ever be what they were? Those cities were bastions when U.S.A. was the manufacturing giant of the world.

They once held a near monopoly on manufacturing until those jobs started moving to the non-union south and then out of the country completely.

Today, as all know, we live in a different point in time as far as economics are concerned. Other countries manufacture.

We do more tech stuff. Stuff which can be done in Detroit, the research triangle (N.C.), suburban D.C., Silicon Valley, etc. etc.

But that is the key: It can be done virtually anywhere where the entrepreneurs want to set up shop and can get the highly trained professionals.

Based on that, I'd think that Detroit doesn't have the built-in advantages that it did say 50 years ago when Ford built cars, ran his own steel mills, etc. etc. (surprisingly vertical for an automobile manufacturer, I think; maybe Henry Ford should have bought some plastic factories, rubber factories, etc.).

Having said all of that Detroit (and the metro area) and Michigan can come back but they don't have some of the advantages that other areas like the ones I mentioned have.

Without the huge, built-in advantages of 75 years ago, the recovery will be more modest.

However, the recovery will be sufficient that Detroit can grow and the downtown continue its remarkable renaissance.

I do believe this downtown Detroit renaissance is vital. If it somehow fails, there may never been a downtown worth talking about.

BC is critical. A new hockey arena is critical. Quicken Loans is critical. housing along the river and out to at least WSU is critical.

I think downtown is hitting 'critical mass' now and the '07 developments are putting it over the top.

I believe it and more importantly folks with big bucks and big dreams like Mr. Ferchill believe it.

If HE didn't think downtown Detroit had not hit critical mass we wouldn't be discussing BC and the WSJ's story which has gone 'to the ends of the earth'.

(Message edited by emu_steve on June 03, 2007)
Top of pageBottom of page

Emu_steve
Member
Username: Emu_steve

Post Number: 323
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Sunday, June 03, 2007 - 9:52 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Might add a "P.S." comment about 'critical mass'.

One poster in a thread indicated that if the hockey arena is built behind the Fox and using some of the "Photoshop" work showing some of the parcels which would border the arena and how they would be ripe for development, then maybe down the road one could look down at downtown Detroit and see NO LARGE parcels left being underutilized as surface parking.

This is, of course, what folks talk about when they see a new hockey arena, development adjacent to that arena, streetscaping by DTE, and then the MGM H-C.

Think of it 5 years back (say 2002) and 5 years forward (say 2012).

I'm sure most folks not familiar with Detroit would have ever thought it was possible for so much to happen in such a compressed time period.
Top of pageBottom of page

Iheartthed
Member
Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 882
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, June 03, 2007 - 12:51 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"divisiveness plays right into the hands of the steady stream of unqualified people running for office in the COD, making it that much easier for unproductive candidates to play the race card for votes."

Good point.
Top of pageBottom of page

Bumble
Member
Username: Bumble

Post Number: 119
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Sunday, June 03, 2007 - 2:31 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

Iheartthed
Member
Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 882
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, June 03, 2007 - 12:51 pm:

------------------------------ ------------------------------ --------------------
"divisiveness plays right into the hands of the steady stream of unqualified people running for office in the COD, making it that much easier for unproductive candidates to play the race card for votes."

Good point.



Which is like saying LBP can exercise self control but Detroit politicians can't.
Top of pageBottom of page

Ray
Member
Username: Ray

Post Number: 901
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Monday, June 04, 2007 - 9:44 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

LBP has done fabulous things, but the tragedy is he really doesn't like Blacks or Detroit, and so instead of applying his considerable talents to help the region, he's undermined it.

OC will be a wastland in 30 years (or less) and that will be his legacy. It's tragic.

Add Your Message Here
Posting is currently disabled in this topic. Contact your discussion moderator for more information.