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haydenth

Detroit Hi-Tech Buildings?

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Hiya all, I'm a chronic lurker here. I'm looking to start a hi-tech telecommunications firm in Detroit (doing mostly VoIP and SMS stuff) and I need to find a building where I can get access to high-bandwidth services at pretty low cost. I mostly just need a couple of offices and rack space, but I wouldn't mind low rent and a nice view :)

Hence.. Does anyone know the current status of the Book Tower? I heard that they're converting the Book Building into lofts and the tower into office space and they already have quite a few tenants, but I can't find any contact information on the owner of the building. I tried the email at their website, but it got rejected by their email server. If so, does anyone know what the lease costs look like? Does anyone have her email address or contact info?

I'm also looking at Techtown by WSU. Does anybody have any experience with them?

Any other suggestions of buildings with easy/inexpensive bandwidth costs in Downtown/midtown/New Center?

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I'd recommend Book Tower, the Guardian, or the Dime.

http://www.booktowerdetroit.com

http://guardianbuilding.com/

http://dimebuilding.com

For views, you can't beat the Book. The offices there are dirt cheap too. I have a friend who used to keep an office there just for the view so that he could go up and take photos whenever he wanted.

Book Tower's website seems to be disfunctional. I don't know the leasing contact info off the top of my head though.

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I'd recommend Book Tower, the Guardian, or the Dime.

http://www.booktowerdetroit.com

http://guardianbuilding.com/

http://dimebuilding.com

For views, you can't beat the Book. The offices there are dirt cheap too. I have a friend who used to keep an office there just for the view so that he could go up and take photos whenever he wanted.

Book Tower's website seems to be disfunctional. I don't know the leasing contact info off the top of my head though.

Tell him to split the rent with me and he can take pictures whenever he likes :) Is the building secure enough to have racks and racks of computer equipment?

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Actully you'll want to check the Penobscot building. Surprisingly that's where all the major trunks (fiber) in the area converge, from what I understand. That's why Smart Detroit (Downtown high-tech/communications consortia) was setup in that building - though I think Smart Detroit is no longer in existance.

No matter what, you'll be dealing with SBC for the actual lines as they own it all in this town.

Here's pointer to an old article.

http://www.detnews.com/2000/business/0003/17/B01-17581.htm

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Tell him to split the rent with me and he can take pictures whenever he likes :) Is the building secure enough to have racks and racks of computer equipment?

Actually, funny you bring that up. A few questions for you:

1) Would you be seriously considering splitting the rent?

2) Would you require any type on infrastructure in place (A/C, raised floor, fire supression, etc.)

3) How many racks?

The reason I ask is because I might need a spot to store a few racks of equipment (webservers, appservers, SAN, etc.) and I was thinking "man, wouldnt it be cool if there was someone else who wanted to go in on a small office".

So how serious about this are you?

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Actully you'll want to check the Penobscot building. Surprisingly that's where all the major trunks (fiber) in the area converge, from what I understand. That's why Smart Detroit (Downtown high-tech/communications consortia) was setup in that building - though I think Smart Detroit is no longer in existance.

No matter what, you'll be dealing with SBC for the actual lines as they own it all in this town.

Here's pointer to an old article.

http://www.detnews.com/2000/business/0003/17/B01-17581.htm

And in reference to this point, Jin Kim might be right with the Penobscot. Detroit sits on a main sonet ring, but it will be much better if you can get into a building that already has the framework in place (ADM if going OC3 or higher, or has DMARC's setup if going lower then an OC). I know that there are already some companies in the Penobscot that demux an OC connection, which means SBC has fiber into the building, which also means no digging, which equals less $$$$

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And in reference to this point, Jin Kim might be right with the Penobscot. Detroit sits on a main sonet ring, but it will be much better if you can get into a building that already has the framework in place (ADM if going OC3 or higher, or has DMARC's setup if going lower then an OC). I know that there are already some companies in the Penobscot that demux an OC connection, which means SBC has fiber into the building, which also means no digging, which equals less $$$$

Well, I guess I'm not a talking about getting an OC backbone connection just yet. I'm just looking for probably a T1 and four-six PRIs. I would presume something like that could be reasonably deployed in a much lower cost office environment ( like the Book Tower ! ) Besides, I kind of have this sick fantasy about renting some lower class ( class c ) office space and turning it into something of quality.

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Actually, funny you bring that up. A few questions for you:

1) Would you be seriously considering splitting the rent?

2) Would you require any type on infrastructure in place (A/C, raised floor, fire supression, etc.)

3) How many racks?

The reason I ask is because I might need a spot to store a few racks of equipment (webservers, appservers, SAN, etc.) and I was thinking "man, wouldnt it be cool if there was someone else who wanted to go in on a small office".

So how serious about this are you?

Well, I am serious about doing this - however I am in the middle phase of getting my business going. I'm in that sticky phase between business plan and getting some kind of funding together and trying to figure out exactly HOW I'm going to do the funding - hence why I am looking at cheap office space. I'd probably need no more than one rack to start and a window office.

I'm not the kind of guy to try to get VC and dump a million into my biz, I want it to grow naturally and I would like to be in an environment where there is the flexibility to start small and expand as I need to and spend as little as possible at first. I'd prefer not to have to worry about a data center at first, and run things in house and then move to a data center as it becomes necessary.

In case you're wondering, you can see my company's website at www.astoriatelecom.net. In an 'elevator pitch' - I do telecommunications application programming for services such as radio promotions, virtual PBX, database IVR integration, and other fun applications. You can find my contact info on the website if you want to chit-chat more.

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Well, I guess I'm not a talking about getting an OC backbone connection just yet. I'm just looking for probably a T1 and four-six PRIs. I would presume something like that could be reasonably deployed in a much lower cost office environment ( like the Book Tower ! ) Besides, I kind of have this sick fantasy about renting some lower class ( class c ) office space and turning it into something of quality.

There are a lot of high powered telecommunications antennas on the Book Tower, so you're probably on the safe side of having enough copper or equivalent already being wired there for a T1. However, it's not unusual for building in downtown to not have more than a few phone lines. My building, for example, only had 3 phone lines (none to our office) before we moved in. And it was a freshly renovated building, then.

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Replying to my original post - I took a look at the Book Tower and Techtown today and was very impressed with both. Detroit Office space has a character that cannot be found elsewhere - in the suburbs or any other city.

This isn't a real estate site - so I won't go into further details, however. Anyone interested, feel free to drop me an email [email protected]

Cheers

Tom

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My brother ran an internet building and service company from there (Penobscot) for a couple years.

He rented there because of the hi-tech capabilities in the building, he is in the suburbs now but says the city has much better infrastructure for that type of business. He left because the rent wasn't as inexpennsive as some think.

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