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Work starts on new Detroit Fed branch

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Work starts on new Detroit Fed branch

$80-million project to replace downtown offices in late 2005

February 10, 2004

BY JOHN GALLAGHER

FREE PRESS BUSINESS WRITER

Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and other leaders broke ground Monday on the new $80-million Detroit branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, one of the largest development projects to begin in Detroit this year.

Located near I-75 and Warren north of Detroit's Eastern Market district, the branch bank and grounds will occupy 17 acres and be ready for use in late 2005.

The new structure will replace the Fed's current Detroit branch office downtown, which employs a similar number of people.

As part of the nation's Federal Reserve banking system, the new branch will employ about 275 staffers who handle cash and check processing, engage in economic research and work on education and community outreach programs.

A 24-hour-a-day, high-security facility not open to the public, the branch's cash and check processing will be modern, flexible and adaptable to changing technologies.

"I am excited about this project," Kilpatrick said at the groundbreaking. Noting that a new school has been built and other projects were taking place nearby, he added, "You really can start to look at the possibilities and the innovation you can create in this part of town. We have the beginnings of a real cohesive neighborhood."

The Detroit branch serves the Lower Peninsula. A seven-member board of directors headed by businessman Edsel Ford II oversees branch operations and reports on economic conditions in the region.

Michael Moskow, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, said the new Detroit branch represents the Chicago bank's biggest investment in many years.

"This facility will be a shining star in the Federal Reserve system," Moskow said.

The Detroit-based architectural firm SmithGroup designed the new building.

The older building at Shelby and Fort streets was built in 1926 and added a modern wing designed by famed architect Minoru Yamasaki in the 1950s when he was working for SmithGroup's predecessor, Smith Hinchman & Grylls.

One of the oldest facilities in the Federal Reserve system, the downtown building will be sold as the new one is finished.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago is one of 12 regional Reserve Banks that, along with the Federal Reserve Board in Washington, D.C., make up the nation's central bank.

Contact JOHN GALLAGHER at 313-222-5173 or [email protected]

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Some pics from the Detroit News:

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A rendering shows the new bank, which will sort and distribute cash and checks, and conduct economic research, education and community relations. About 275 people will work in the building.

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An excavator clears land on a 17-acre site in Detroit at Forest and Russell, north of Eastern Market, for the new, $79.5 million, four-story, 220,000-square-foot Detroit branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.

0210041_b_fed_75warren.jpg

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