Detroit plans clean up, development for former Uniroyal site

Sep 2, 2011

Detroit officials have announced a $20 million effort to clean up one of the city’s most notorious pieces of vacant land. They say it's only phase 1 of a plan to clean up the site on Detroit’s east riverfront that once housed a Uniroyal tire factory, and other heavy industry that contaminated the land. For years, those industries fought with the city and amongst themselves over who was responsible for the clean-up. There’s now enough of an agreement to clean up part of the site. The Detroit Economic Growth Corporation will continue negotiations with the corporations responsible for the clean-up of the entire 43-acre site, including DTE Energy, Michelin North America, and E.I. du Pont. Officials say those negotiations should be completed “soon.” Detroit Mayor Dave Bing says he knows Detroiters have heard all kinds of promises about the “Uniroyal site” before—but this time, it’s the real deal.

“For those of us who have been here for awhile, there were all kinds of promises that have been made, all kinds of projects and proposals for this site. But we’re now today, starting phase 1 for a $20 million investment to clean part of this 43 acres up.”

Former NFL star and native Detroiter Jerome Bettis has tentative plans to develop the site. The clean-up will also allow let the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy finish a stretch of the city’s growing riverwalk.