As previously reported, there has been a ton of speculation buzzing around that Ford was looking to purchasing a landmark (and long-abandoned) train depot in Detroit, known as the Michigan Central Station. It seems the company had it in mind as a campus for the company’s self-driving vehicles sector.
Well, Autoblog has reported more news recently to indicate that Ford will in fact be purchasing the train station. Last week, the building’s ownership was transferred from MCS Crown Land Development Co. LLC to an unknown entity, coming from the New York law firm Phillips Lytle LLP’s address. This law firm also happens to be the one that works for Ford when it comes to legal matters. In addition, the Detroit Public Schools Book Depository building, which stands next to the station and has the same address (but a different entity) had its ownership transferred by MCS to this same address.
Neither MCS, Ford, or Phillips have commented on this transfer. Although, Ford has begun moving about 220 workers, which includes their global electric vehicles (EV) group, referred to as Team Edison, into a recently refurbished factory in Detroit’s Corktown neighbourhood, which is coincidentally located mere minutes from the train station mentioned above. This, along with the deed transfer, seems to have all arrows pointing towards a confirmed plan for the automaker to purchase the train station in an effort to build a campus in the Corktown community, as previously reported. This seems to be all part of Ford’s revitalization efforts in Detroit, with a focus on where to house their autonomous and EV groups.
It seems Ford wants to make a return to Detroit, the place where the company built its roots about 113 years ago. This would add to the wave of other high-level conglomerates moving (or planning to move) their offices in the central part of this city, including: Microsoft, Tata Technologies, and Google.
It is being reported that the train station has the capacity to hold thousands of Ford workers, with a price tag around redevelopment estimated at a minimum of $300 million.