Detroit's unique architecture offers vintage chic to new businesses

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Photo by Brian Rozman.

A trend we're really into is how new Detroit businesses are retaining some of the original buildings' charming, if quirky, features. Detroit boasts some of the greatest examples of Art Deco architecture in the country, and it's great to see these buildings get a new life. From the original zig-zag shaped roof of the Detroit Bus Co.'s new home to dPop!'s massive circular vault doors in the Chrysler House, new businesses are embracing Detroit's unique architecture — and sometimes going at great lengths to preserve it. From the Detroit News:

Vintage elements of Detroit’s old saloons, auto factories and warehouses — many of which have sat empty and crumbling for years — are finding new life as entrepreneurs preserve the historic structures that house them.

Whether it’s old-style factory glass windows, 100-year-old tin ceilings or smaller items such as antique electric clocksor wooden doors, Detroit’s new wave of business owners is going to great lengths to retain the past. Some apply for historical preservation tax credits to help with the rehab; others take on the additional work — and costs — to maintain original structural and decorative features.

It’s a trend common in other cities as well, but design experts say today’s Detroit is attractive because of the abundance of uniquely designed buildings available for purchase.

“People are wanting to move into structures that have a lot of history and character,” said Ryan Smith, an architect with Detroit-based Kraemer Design Group who’s helped rehab a number of historic buildings. “You don’t have to convince developers anymore. They know what they want; it’s bringing these old buildings back to life.

Read more here.

Photo by Brian Rozman. Photo by Brian Rozman.  

About The Author

Lee DeVito

Leyland "Lee" DeVito grew up in the suburbs of Detroit, where he read Metro Times religiously due to teenaged-induced boredom. He became a contributing writer for Metro Times in 2009, and Editor in Chief in 2016. In addition to writing, he also supplies occasional illustrations. His writing has been published...
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