May 18, 2024

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General Motors is moving its Detroit headquarters to a new tower downtown, and plans to redevelop its iconic Renaissance Center

General Motors is moving its Detroit headquarters to a new tower downtown, and plans to redevelop its iconic Renaissance Center

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors Co. plans to move its iconic Detroit headquarters to a new downtown office tower and redevelop the site of its main office, a person familiar with the plans said.

The source said that the company has scheduled a press conference on Monday afternoon with Bedrock Real Estate Company to announce its plans.

In addition, Bedrock, which owns several downtown office buildings, will join GM in studying the redevelopment of the seven-building Renaissance Center now owned by GM, said the person, who asked to remain anonymous because an announcement has not been made. officially announced the plans.

General Motors CEO Mary Barra and Bedrock Chairman Dan Gilbert will attend the news conference at the site of the new tower Bedrock is building on the site of the old Hudson Department Store in the heart of downtown.

GM's head office will move to the Hudson Tower, the person said.

The plan does not include GM selling RenCen, as the tower complex is known locally. The complex is the centerpiece of the Detroit skyline and is often featured on sports television shows.

General Motors purchased the tower complex in 1996 and then moved its headquarters there from a location north of downtown. It has been the company's headquarters ever since, so the move marks the end of an era for the site.

Gilbert's Bedrock Company has been purchasing downtown properties for many years and leading to its rebirth. He also runs the loan company Rocket Mortgage.

In a 2022 interview, Barra told The Associated Press that GM would keep its head office at the RenCen complex across the Detroit River from Canada.

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But she modified her statements, saying that she could not predict what might happen in five, 10 or 15 years. Since then, about 5,000 GM workers have taken early retirement, and workers in May are still working a hybrid work schedule between office and home, so GM needs less office space.

“Our headquarters will always be in Detroit, in the Rensen area,” she said, using the name locals call the complex. “The plan now is for it to be in the Renaissance Center. This is our home,” she said.

The company acquires about 1 1/2 of RenCen's towers, which have seen little pedestrian traffic for years. Most of GM's workforce, including product development and engineering, is located north of the city in a modernized 1950s tech center on the outskirts of Warren. After GM went bankrupt in 2009, the company considered moving its headquarters there.

“As we move to having a more hybrid work structure, we have to look at the right space,” Barra said.

She also hinted in the interview that GM would explore riverside development opportunities with the city.

The Renaissance Center was built by Henry Ford II, who formed a coalition in the 1970s in an attempt to revitalize downtown Detroit.

Bedrock announced last week that the final structural steel beam has been placed on the Hudson Tower, which is expected to include 1.5 million square feet of retail, office, dining, hospitality and residential space. The new tower is located about one mile north of General Motors' current headquarters.

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