Detroit billionaire Dan Gilbert has come to an agreement with Wayne County over the acquisition of the so-called “fail jail” site located downtown on Gratiot Avenue, where a county jail has remained half-constructed for years. In the deal, Gilbert’s Rock Ventures will contribute $153 million to the $533 million construction cost for the criminal justice facility around I-75 and East Warren Avenue in exchange for the 15-acre site downtown. The new criminal justice complex is expected to hold a “2,280-bed jail, 25 courtrooms and five hearing rooms, sheriff’s and prosecutor department offices, and a 160-bed juvenile detention facility.”
The Quicken Loans founder is also required to put forth an investment of at least $250 million in the fail jail site and 51 percent of construction jobs must go to Wayne county residents. Originally, a mixed-used development containing a Major League Soccer stadium was planned for the site but Detroit’s MLS expansion committee ultimately selected Ford Field for the bid. A mixed-use development including housing, retail, and entertainment is a safe guess now considering his latest developments on the Hudson’s site and Monroe Blocks.
By Jared Hoffman
Research Associate, JMJ Phillip Group