Demolition of the Target building at the former Northland Center began on October 26 as the city paves the way for redevelopment. A ceremony preceded the demolition with remarks from Mayor Kenson Siver, Council President Myron Frasier and City Administrator Fred Zorn.
The Southfield City Council unanimously voted to award the contract for the Target/Firestone demolition to Dore & Associates of Bay City, Michigan ($572,650.00 + contingency) at the October 23 city council meeting.
The city of Southfield purchased the closed Northland Center mall at Eight Mile Road and the Lodge Freeway, located in the City’s Downtown Development Authority (DDA) District, from the court-ordered receiver in October of 2015 for $2.4 million with plans to remediate, demolish and sell the property to a qualified developer. The former Northland Center site was also recently included as potential location for the new Amazon HQ2 as part of the regional proposal submitted by the city of Detroit and other partners.
The environmental assessment, asbestos abatement and remediation of the former Target and Firestone buildings has been completed. The complete demolition of the Target building is expected to take approximately two weeks, followed by the demolition of the Firestone building. As the environmental assessment and remediation of the remainder of the mall and other buildings continues, further demolition is expected to begin in the spring of 2018.
The Southfield City Council approved a master plan for the 125-acre redevelopment last year that is a conceptional, market driven blueprint that outlines the standards and vision for developers of the former mall property. Planning consultants OHM Advisors conducted a thorough technical analysis of the site, examination of the existing buildings/structures, an assessment of environmental factors, and a market analysis to determine the best possible development potential for the former mall. The resulting plan offers a dynamic mix of housing options, R&D, medical office, retail, entertainment and dining. The new plan also reviewed which buildings, if any, could be reused. This review indicated the former Macy’s building has great potential for adaptive reuse and as such has already generated a great deal of interest from local and national developers.
“The former Northland Center represents an outstanding opportunity for a vibrant new mixed-use development of residential, retail, office and green space,” commented Southfield Mayor Kenson Siver. “The Northland name is synonymous with Southfield and it’s imperative that we find the finest development possible for this very prominent and centrally-located site – whether it be the new Amazon HQ2 or another dynamic use. We are very excited about this project and confident that it will be a great success.”
The master plan is based on a series of development blocks/districts that collectively create a safe and vibrant mixed-use destination for southeast Michigan residents, businesses, and visitors. The Plan is intended to be highly flexible to adapt to market conditions. While adaptable, the development of the area will stay true to the vision of vibrancy, safety, inclusion, innovation, health and wellness, sustainability, and community. High quality architecture and public spaces are essentials to the long-term success of the project. Attention to detail and brand elements will continue to be a key focus of the redevelopment of the area with the goal of creating more than just another new development – Northland will be a place to call home.
When Northland Center opened in March 1954, it was the largest shopping mall in the world, 20 years later, in 1974, the mall was enclosed. Northland led the way for Southfield to become a major commercial, business and residential center in metropolitan Detroit. At the time of the original center’s completion, Southfield’s population was only 25,000. Fifteen years later, the population had more than doubled to 69,000, and today the city boasts over 73,000 residents and a daytime population reaching 175,000. Alongside the contribution to population growth, the Center helped foster enormous office expansion. Today, Southfield boasts more than 27 million square feet of office space, making it Michigan’s undisputed business center.
For more information, contact the Southfield Downtown Development Authority at (248) 796-5190 or visit www.imaginenorthland.com