April 10, 2014

Downtown Development Authority Approves Barton Malow-Hunt-White as General Contractor to Build the New Detroit Events Center

Barton Malow-Hunt-White brings local, regional and national construction excellence to events center project that will create 5,500 jobs and $100 million in income for Detroit residents; entire district development will create 8,300 jobs and $290 million in jobs-related income.

DETROIT, MI – The City of Detroit Downtown Development Authority Board (DDA) today (unanimously) approved the recommendation by Olympia Development of Michigan (ODM) and the Downtown Development Authority staff to hire Barton Malow-Hunt-White as general contractor for construction of the new Detroit events center.

Barton Malow-Hunt-White is an industry leader in sports and entertainment construction. Notable projects by team members include Ford Field, Comerica Park, the expansion and renovation of The University of Michigan Football Stadium, Detroit Riverfront, Detroit Medical Center Pediatric Specialty Center and Amway Arena in Orlando, Florida.

“Barton Malow-Hunt-White has built some of the most innovative sports and entertainment venues across the country,” said Christopher Ilitch, president and CEO, Ilitch Holdings, Inc. “They are the right team to help Olympia Development bring to life the energy and excitement of the new events center. The state-of-the-art facility will be the new home of the Detroit Red Wings and instantly a preferred destination for every arena concert, family show and premiere sporting event. The venue will set a new standard of amenities while retaining characteristics that are uniquely Detroit.”

Brian Holdwick, executive vice president for business development at Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, said, “We are pleased that we have a primary construction team in place that has great credentials and a commitment to help our ongoing success in revitalizing the city and creating jobs for Detroiters.”

Proposals were submitted from many of the top construction firms in the industry. Barton Malow-Hunt-White was chosen because of its sports and entertainment construction experience, unsurpassed construction management leadership, and demonstrated commitment to working with the local community.

“We are thrilled and honored to be selected as the construction team to build the new events center right here in Detroit,” said Ryan Maibach, President, Barton Malow-Hunt-White. “This project will be locally sourced and have a significant economic impact on our community. It is a core component of Detroit’s revitalization strategy and we are proud to lead the efforts of the many Detroit workers and businesses that will play a major role in building this state-of-the-art events center.”

As part of the construction, Barton Malow-Hunt-White will implement the workforce and business participation plan. The comprehensive plan was created by ODM, with input from the City of Detroit Ethics and Human Rights Office, Detroit Employment Solutions, and the local construction trade unions. Included in the plan are outreach, training and apprentice programs to ready the current and future work force of Detroit for construction job opportunities. The construction of the entire events center, residential and commercial mixed-use district will create approximately 8,300 jobs and $290 million in job-related income. The building of the new events center alone is anticipated to create approximately 5,500 jobs with more than half of those construction jobs being filled by Detroit residents and over $100 million being paid to Detroit-resident workers.

“Olympia Development of Michigan put forth a very comprehensive workforce development plan. Not only does it provide employment skills training opportunities for Detroit’s current residents, it also includes supporting our apprentice program to ensure that our future workforce have the skills necessary to capitalize on construction opportunities within the City of Detroit,” said Pam Moore, President and CEO of Detroit Employment Solutions.

The new Detroit events center is the anchor of the $650 million public-private catalyst development project that includes a $200 million investment by ODM to redevelop an underutilized area in downtown Detroit into a mixed-use development of residential, retail and office space. Of the project costs, ODM will contribute $367 million or 56% and the State of Michigan and the DDA will contribute $283 million or 44%. It is expected that the project’s economic impact on Detroit, the region and State will be $1.8 billion.


About Olympia Development of Michigan
Olympia Development of Michigan is a Detroit-based full-service real estate company owned by Detroit entrepreneurs Michael and Marian Ilitch. The company is responsible for developing and investing in some of Detroit’s most recognized and visited venues, including the nationally acclaimed Comerica Park. Other Ilitch companies in the food, sports and entertainment industries include: Little Caesars Pizza, Blue Line Foodservice Distribution, the Detroit Red Wings, Olympia Entertainment, Little Caesars Pizza Kits Fundraising Program, Champion Foods, Ilitch Holdings and Uptown Entertainment. Michael Ilitch owns the Detroit Tigers. Marian Ilitch owns the MotorCity Casino Hotel.