Dearborn City Council on Tuesday approved a five-year extension of an agreement on a major development in progress: the Dearborn Town Center.
Located at the corner of Michigan Avenue and Schaefer Road in east downtown Dearborn, the REDICO project sits in the space formerly occupied by a Montgomery Ward department store. The development has three phases, the first of which—the Midwest Medical Center—opened in January 2011.
But the second two phases, Mayor Jack O’Reilly explained to council members on Tuesday, are “market driven,” so the demand must be there before they come to fruition. They include a 100-unit senior living facility, as well as a 22,000-square-foot office building.
When the project began in 2008, developer REDICO also began an agreement with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, which gave them a 10-year time frame to complete the project, at the conclusion of which they would receive a $10 million Michigan Economic Growth Authority Grant.
Dearborn’s agreement extension now meshes with the MEDC timeline for completion—although Councilman Mark Shooshanian questioned Mayor O’Reilly as to whether REDICO had a timetable set for completion of the two additional phases.
O’Reilly said that the senior housing was closer to reality than the office space—which Dearborn has an over-saturated market for.
If they don’t finish the projects as outlined, or come up with an alternative plan, O’Reilly said, “they lose the whole $10 million.”