Rock Ventures Wraps Up 2012 with Purchase of Five Downtown Detroit Properties

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The old Kresge building at 1201 Woodward, the latest acquisition of Rock Ventures.

The old Kresge building at 1201 Woodward, the latest acquisition of Rock Ventures.

DETROIT — Rock Ventures today announced the purchase of five additional properties, wrapping up a year in which it acquired eight buildings totaling 630,000 square feet of commercial space.

The newest acquisitions bring Rock Ventures’ downtown Detroit real estate investments to 15 buildings totaling 2.6 million square feet of commercial space, and three parking structures for a combined 3,500 parking spaces.

In addition, Rock Ventures broke ground on a 33,000 square-foot specialty retail development and 10-story parking garage last month, renovated 633,000 square feet of commercial space, and located 45 companies to the city, including Twitter, Chrysler, Metro-West Appraisal, and numerous technology related start-ups. Rock Ventures’ family of companies, including Quicken Loans and Title Source, has brought 7,000-plus people to work in downtown Detroit since August 2010.

“It has been an exciting year of opportunity in Detroit,” said Dan Gilbert, founder and chairman of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans.  “Our focus in 2013 will be on the three R’s — residential, rail and retail — all of which are vital in creating the vibrant, thriving urban core that we all envision.”

Rock Ventures’ newest building acquisitions are:

* 1201 Woodward – Kresge Building
The 54,000 square-foot property built in 1891 was home to the former Kresge store. The nine-story building, located on the northwest corner of Woodward Avenue and State Street, will be renovated to accommodate first floor retail and either office or residential space above. A portion of the first floor currently houses The Detroit Shoppe and Detroit Artist Market pop-up stores.

* 1217 Woodward
This five-story 30,000 square-foot building is located on the west side of Woodward Avenue, immediately north of the Kresge Building. Built in 1891, the building will be renovated and used for first floor retail and either office or residential space above. A portion of the first floor currently houses Santa’s Wonderland, a seasonal store specifically for children with proceeds benefitting Detroit Goodfellows, ensuring there is “No Kiddie without a Christmas.”

* 1412 Woodward
Located on the east side of Woodward Avenue between Grand River Avenue and John R Street, this three-story building was built in 1916. The 6,000 square-foot building is currently unoccupied, but will feature first floor retail with office space above.

* 1301 Broadway – Cary Building Lofts
The 20,000 square-foot building, built in 1906, is located on the west corner of Gratiot Avenue and Broadway Street. The five-story structure will undergo extensive renovations to accommodate first floor retail space with residential space above.

* 1521 Broadway – Small Plates Building
The 9,300 square-foot building is 100 percent occupied by Small Plates restaurant on the first floor with four residential loft apartments above. The five-story building is located on the west side of Broadway Street between John R and Witherell Street.

The building purchases were brokered by Bedrock Real Estate Services, Rock Ventures’ full-service real estate firm. Bedrock leases, develops and manages all of Rock Ventures’ buildings, and has helped locate more than 65 companies to downtown Detroit since August 2010.

“The need for retail and updated office and residential space in downtown Detroit is keeping Bedrock extremely busy,” said Jim Ketai, Managing Partner at Bedrock, adding that the firm has grown by nearly 60 percent in the past year to keep up with the demand.”

For more information about Bedrock Real Estate Services, please visit www.bedrockmgt.com.

Rock Ventures LLC is an umbrella entity formed to provide operational coordination, guidance, and integration of Dan Gilbert’s portfolio of companies, investments and real estate. Rock Ventures’ flagship company is Quicken Loans, the nation’s largest online home lender and fourth largest retail lender.

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