Future Friday: The Detroit That Never Was, Part II

In the second part of our series on unrealized projects proposed for Detroit we first explore another proposed redesign for the city’s waterfront. In 1970, the Union Depot off of Third Street was in its final days, Detroit had just made a series of unsuccessful Olympic bids involving stadium construction, and Wayne County Community College’s downtown campus and Joe Louis Arena were still years away. What could be done with this space? As this photo of a model and matching blueprint show, a baseball stadium and surrounding unusual blocky structures containing shopping, hotels, and housing were proposed. The Riverfront Towers resemble the latter part of this plan, in purpose if not form. Would the West Side Industrial area have worked as a shopping destination? Where would the Red Wings have ended up without space for Joe Louis?

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