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General Motors headquarters moving from RenCen to Hudson's building in downtown Detroit

General Motors moving headquarters to Hudson's building in Detroit
General Motors moving headquarters to Hudson's building in Detroit 02:17

General Motors and real estate firm Bedrock announced Monday the automaker's headquarters will move to Hudson's Detroit in downtown Detroit from the Renaissance Center.

GM CEO Mary Barra and Bedrock Chairman Dan Gilbert held a news conference to discuss the deal.

According to Bedrock, the automaker will move into its new space in 2025 at the site of the former J.L. Hudson Department Store under an initial 15-year, multi-level lease.

GM, Bedrock, the city of Detroit and Wayne County will spend the next year exploring redevelopment of the Renaissance Center prior to the company's move.

"What an exciting day for Detroit! GM will be relocating their headquarters to Hudson's Detroit," Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan said in a post on X. "General Motors Co. has made investments for the people in Detroit, and now with Bedrock, Hudson's, Wayne County, and the City of Detroit we are welcoming GM to Hudson's Detroit.

"As Dan Gilbert emphasized today, this collaboration proves that when Detroit unites, we achieve remarkable results. GM and Detroit have experienced ups and downs together, and we're thrilled to be on this journey of resurgence together once more. While we are thrilled to bring General Motors to Hudson, and together, with our collective efforts, we will maximize the utilization of the Renaissance Center."

It is GM's fourth headquarters location in Detroit since 1911, according to Bedrock Detroit.  

"We are proud to remain in the city of Detroit in a modern office building that fits the evolving needs of our workforce, right in the heart of downtown," Barra said in a statement. "Our new headquarters will provide collaboration areas for our teams, executive offices and display space for our vehicles. Dan Gilbert and Bedrock have done so much to make downtown Detroit a great place to live, work and visit. We are thrilled to be a significant part of the historic Hudson's project and also look forward to working with them to explore new ideas and opportunities for the Renaissance Center site and the riverfront."

In a 2022 interview, Barra told The Associated Press that GM will keep its main office in the seven-building tower complex just across the Detroit River from Canada.

But she qualified her statements, saying she can't predict what might happen in five, 10 or 15 years. Since then, about 5,000 white-collar workers at GM took early retirement buyouts, and many workers are still on a hybrid office-home work schedule, so GM needs less office space.

The company takes up about 1 1/2 of the RenCen's towers, which have seen little pedestrian traffic for years. Much of GM's work force, including product development and engineering, is north of the city at an updated 1950s technical center in suburban Warren. After GM's 2009 bankruptcy, the company considered moving its headquarters there.

She also hinted in the interview that GM would explore riverfront development opportunities with the city.

The Renaissance Center was built by Henry Ford II, who formed a coalition in the 1970s in an effort to reinvigorate Detroit's downtown. GM bought the complex in 1996 and renovated it, moving its headquarters there from an area north of downtown.

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