By Edward Cardenas
DETROIT (CBS Detroit) – One of downtown Detroit’s most historic, and for a while forgotten, neighborhoods is in the midst of transition into a bustling residential, commercial and retail areas.
Capitol Park, which was home to Michigan’s first state capitol and is just west of Woodward and north of Michigan, is experiencing tens of millions of dollars or renovation to the historic buildings surrounding the area.
Among the projects are undergoing renovations are 1145 and 1212 Griswold which received over $32 million in debt and equity financing from JPMorgan Chase.
Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO, joined with city officials and other stakeholders Monday for a groundbreaking ceremony to celebrate the investment in these buildings and the anniversary of the firm’s $100 million, five-year commitment to Detroit.
“The $100 million effort was a special effort to make investments in community development, work skills initiatives and developments like this,” said Dimon, as he stood in the heart of the 1145 building which is undergoing a renovation.
The groundbreaking event was held in the formerly vacant 1145 Griswold building. Work is underway to transform the 11-story building into 63 market-rate apartments and 18,664 square feet of commercial space. Work on the building is expected to be complete in first quarter of 2016.
Across Griswold sits the former Detroit Saving Bank Building, which also received financing from JPMorgan, which has been renovated in a mix of 56 apartment units and office space. The Archdiocese of Detroit currently occupies 43,705 feet of office space in the building.
“You are going to have more than 100 residential units in a part of the city that was empty,” said Mayor Mike Duggan, who praised the partnership between the city and JPMorgan. “This is the true definition of partnership.”
The announcement comes on the one-year anniversary of JPMorgan’s $100 million, five-year commitment to Detroit. During the past 12-months, the firm has deployed over $34 million for community development, neighborhood stabilization, workforce training, small business expansion and economic growth.
In the coming year, the firm plans on researching Detroit’s workforce opportunities, challenges and resources; expanding the city’s summer youth employment program; provide financing to buyers seeking to purchase homes in four neighborhoods in the city; support income tax assassinate and financial coaching for Detroit residents and small businesses; the opening of a 34,000-square-foot mixed use property in midtown with market rate housing; and the first round of small business grants will be distributed.
The groundbreaking event came one day before JPMorgan Chase’s annual meeting of shareholders at The Westin Book Cadillac Detroit. Dimon said that items from Eastern Market will be sampled for attendees.
“My directors and shareholders will get to see the new Detroit,” he stated.