See our Best of Detroit 2020 winners.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Orbit basically predicted Little Caesars Arena in the '90s

Posted By on Fri, Apr 29, 2016 at 10:38 AM

click to enlarge Orbit's "Ilitchville" rendering, published 22 years ago this month. - VIA THE ORBIT MAGAZINE ANTHOLOGY OFFICIAL FACEBOOK PAGE
  • Via The Orbit Magazine Anthology official Facebook page
  • Orbit's "Ilitchville" rendering, published 22 years ago this month.

On Thursday, it was revealed that the official name for Little Caesars pizza mogul Mike Ilitch's new Red Wings Arena would be (drumroll, please) ... Little Caesars Arena — a final touch that pretty much cements the fact that this whole thing is a giant taxpayer-subsidized commercial for cheap pizza. 
 
It turns out the staff of Detroit's defunct humor magazine Orbit saw this coming. In reference to Ilitch's initial proposal for a public-subsidized "Foxtown" district, an April 1994 "Orbit expose" outlines plans for "Ilitchville," a sprawling entertainment complex that is, in hindsight, almost too realistic to be funny.

The original 1994 story was posted to The Orbit Magazine Anthology official Facebook page after the Thursday announcement.



Orbit writes:
Not since the glory days of Henry Ford has one man done so much for the people he loves! You’ve no doubt seen Ilitch’s entertainment complex plans in the city’s “lesser papers” and on TV. Now, this exclusive Orbit investigative report uncovers what could very possibly be Ilitch’s “real plans” for the revitalization of the city of Detroit.

These plans were mysteriously delivered to the swank Orbit offices in a pizza box (the driver sped away too fast for us to read the license number or delivery sign), and while Orbit is not claiming that this is anything other than a ploy for public attention, there are those cynical enough to believe that these plans represent the Hidden Agenda of the Ilitch Empire.
The Orbit staff was close: Instead of a hockey arena, their Ilitchville features "The Pizza Dome," a sort of two-for-the-price-of-one deal that would house the Detroit Tigers and "the resurrected Detroit Caesars professional softball team." It also featured a towering "Colossus of Detroit" (“billed as the eighth wonder of the world”) made in the image of Little Caesar's toga-wearing "Pizza! Pizza!" mascot. Again, Orbit was nearly spot-on: along with the official name announcement on Thursday, it was announced that the Red Wings logo featured on the roof in the arena's architectural renderings would be swapped out with what is certain to be the world's largest Little Caesars logo.

See the post below.


Tags: , , , , ,

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at letters@metrotimes.com.

Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

October 21, 2020

View more issues

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In Detroit