Southfield (CW50) – In 2018, Ford Motor Company purchased the iconic Michigan Central Station after it had been left dormant since 1995. The historic 18-story building in Corktown is part of Ford’s plans to transform the district into a mobility innovation campus.

The company aims to create a district full of green space, biking trails, cafés, shuttles, scooters, retailers, grocery stores, day care, and parking, with plans to house more than 5,000 Ford employees in the new district. All of which will be anchored by the restored Michigan Central Station. The space is intended to attract innovators, startups, and entrepreneurs.

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Community Connect Host Jackie Paige, with James Courtney, External Engagement Manager of Ford’s Michigan Central Development

James Courtney, External Engagement Manager of Ford’s Michigan Central Development, joins Jackie Paige on Community Connect to discuss Ford’s plans for Michigan Central Station and what the restoration will mean for Corktown.

“As a Detroiter, personally, this excites me because… bringing this building back and activating a space that has been dormant for so long… shows that we are moving forward.”

Rending of Michigan Central Development project (Courtesy of Ford Motor Company)

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There’s been a lot of concern amongst Corktown residents as the restorations and renovation of the new district continues, and Ford is determined to listen to the concerns and work with community members.

“We’ve done a lot of listening to the community and really are trying to understand what is it that [they] want and what [they] think we should be doing, then integrate that into this development.

Ford wants a district that is a place for everyone, with access for all and elevate Detroit’s presence in the mobility conversation around the world. A lot of new people will be added to the community of Detroit with the creation of this district, but Ford wants the city to know that they want to create a space that is also equitable for the community that already exists in the surrounding district of Corktown.

Along with listening and working with residents, Ford has also created a fast-track job program, which looks for people in the impact zone of the development to learn different trade skills and receive on-the-job training within those industries. Ford completed the first run of the program, with several members receiving employment in the trades after the program.

For more information and to tell ford your thoughts about this project go to MichiganCentral.info

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