The David Whitney Building sat forlornly in downtown Detroit in 2011, bearing little resemblance to the jewel it once was at its original opening in 1915. With a dedicated effort from a project team that included specialists in brick and masonry repair, the Whitney was transformed into a 21st century gem that now features a hotel, apartments and hot, new retail space.
The award-winning historic restoration of the building, which re-opened in 2015, was driven by Whitney Partners LLC, a venture of the Roxbury Group and Trans Inns Management/Vox Hospitality. The $92 million renovation began in 2013 and was led by Walbridge as the construction manager.
Through considerable pre-planning, extra effort and unconventional thinking, Walbridge and architect Kraemer Design Group restored the landmark tower into a bustling spot on Woodward Avenue, adjacent to Comerica Park, Ford Field and Detroit’s Fox Theater. The building now houses 136 rooms for the Aloft Detroit Hotel and more than 100 new apartments.
Adaptive re-use and historical restoration projects take effort, pre-planning and smart engineering/design coupled with capable construction. There’s no substitution for experience.