DETROIT (AP) Crews have imploded a vacant, 13-story historic hotel to make way for the construction of a new Detroit Red Wings hockey arena.
The Detroit Historic District Commission voted last month to raze the hotel, which was built in the 1920s. It will be replaced with an underground loading dock.
Implosion cuts the demolition time from three months to one morning, said Olympia Development spokesman Doug Kuiper.
“This event enables us to continue the rapid progress we’re making on opening an incredible new arena — along with retail, residential and office developments —that Detroiters can enjoy and be proud of,” Kuiper said.
“Construction of deep foundations began on the site last week. Excavation is scheduled to be complete at the end of July.”
The nearby — and also vacant — Hotel Eddystone will be renovated. Olympia Development is working on a plan to convert it into 100 rental apartments.
The $450 million, 20,000-seat arena is expected to open in 2017. It will be the anchor for a 45-block entertainment district that will include housing and retail.
The project is expected to create jobs and stimulate growth between downtown and Detroit’s Midtown.
Olympia Development is owned by Red Wings’ owners Mike and Marian Ilitch. The team now plays at the riverfront Joe Louis Arena, which opened in 1979.