DETROIT (WWJ) – Since Detroit announced plans to demolish Ford Auditorium, speculation has been flying regarding the city’s plans for the riverfront site.

Speaking Friday, Mayor Dave Bing shared his idea for the site that once hosted the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Martin Luther King, Junior.

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“My goal is  to move Chene Park from where it’s location today and move it down here. I think this is the right place.  We’ll have a concentration of a lot of activities, a lot of venues, and a lot of people and we can once again open up  the riverfront property as we go east,” said Bing.

Mayor Bing said the move is crucial to fully developing Detroit’s waterfront.

“A lot of investment over the years have gone into our riverfront and for years and years, over 20 years , the Ford Auditorium, which is very historic, has been a blot, quite frankly, because we have not used it,” Bing said.

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The tear-down began Friday.

The demolition and cleanup will take a couple of months. The land will be used for green space until planning & funding for development is complete.

The 5,000-seat auditorium opened in 1956, but has sat vacant since the symphony left in 1989.

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– More on the demolition of Ford Auditorium –