Bedrock Acquires Iconic Book Tower Skyscraper, Book Building and Community Center in Downtown Detroit

After years of sitting vacant, the landmark 38-story tower and adjacent buildings will be transformed into an exciting mixed-use development

August 28, 2015 [DETROIT]Bedrock Real Estate Services today announced the acquisition of the historic 38-story Book Tower, the attached 13-story Book Building and an adjacent 2-story community center in downtown Detroit. The three buildings, totaling approximately 517,000 square feet, are located at 1265, 1249 and 1201 Washington Boulevard, spanning an entire city block between Grand River Avenue and State Street.

Bedrock plans to transform the buildings into a game-changing, mixed-use development that will bring jobs, energy and new life to these properties while expanding revitalization efforts further west of Woodward Avenue to Washington Boulevard. Bedrock now owns and manages more than 80 properties in Detroit’s technology-centric downtown, totaling more than 13 million square feet.

“This project is going to be one of the most exciting redevelopments in our entire Detroit real estate portfolio,” said Dan Gilbert, Founding Partner, Bedrock Real Estate Services. “We will bring this beautiful, world-class iconic landmark back to life in a manner that will make all Detroiters and visitors proud. We can’t wait to get started.”

The historic Book Tower dates back to 1926 and is visible for miles with its ornate, copper roof, Corinthian columns, carved figures and other intricate details. Louis Kamper, one of Detroit’s most noted 20th century architects, designed the building in the Italian Renaissance style after first constructing the attached Book Building in 1917. The famed architect is also well known for designing the Book Cadillac Hotel, just down the street on Washington Boulevard, which has been fully renovated and backs up to Capitol Park, another area that is experiencing a flood of investments and large-scale construction projects. The buildings were named for the Book brothers, J. Burgess, Frank and Herbert, real estate entrepreneurs and developers who had a vision to turn Washington Boulevard into a popular and fashionable destination.

“Nearly 100 years later, Bedrock is pursuing a similar vision for all of downtown Detroit by making significant investments into restoring historic properties such as these and filling them up with a new innovative and unique mix of retail, office and residential tenants,” said Jim Ketai, Managing Partner and CEO of Bedrock. “With each acquisition and each new tenant we are proud to continue our momentum and commitment to rebuilding Detroit.”

Closing on the purchase of all three properties took place Thursday, August 27th.

Building Details

-Book Tower –1265 Washington Boulevard, 38 floors, 241,000 square feet
-Book Building – 1249 Washington Boulevard, 13 floors, 246,000 square feet
-Community Center – 1201 Washington Boulevard, 2 floors, 30,000 square feet

Total: 517,000 square feet

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About Bedrock Real Estate Services

Detroit-based Bedrock Real Estate Services is a full-service real estate firm specializing in acquiring, leasing, financing, developing and managing commercial and residential space. Since its founding in 2011, Bedrock has located more than 130 office and retail tenants in Detroit’s technology-centric downtown. In addition, Bedrock and its affiliates have invested more than $1.8 billion in acquiring, renovating and developing 80+ properties in downtown Detroit totaling more than 13 million square feet.

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Robin Schwartz
For Bedrock Real Estate Services
(313) 373-6533