Detroit’s most infamous counterculture hotspot is out there.
The previous Grande Ballroom, at 8952 Grand River, has been put up on the market for $5 million. The property, which fell into disuse within the early Eighties, is owned by the close by Chapel Hill Missionary Baptist Church, which bought it in 2006 for $60,000.
A sale announcement was posted on-line Sunday by the Dorsett Brokerage Growth & Administration Group of Detroit.
A church consultant who spoke to the Free Press declined to elaborate on the potential sale.
The long-dilapidated constructing has been the supply of a few of Detroit’s most enduring rock mythologies, lengthy immortalized in songs and films, together with the 2012 documentary “Louder Than Love.”
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From 1966 to 1972, the Grande reigned as Detroit’s premier rock venue, the nerve heart of the town’s hippie musical tradition. Touring company included Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and the Who, whereas native artists corresponding to Ted Nugent’s MC5, Stooges, Frost and Amboy Dukes had been regulars.
In October 1968, MC5 – the venue’s home band – recorded their explosive debut album, “Kick Out the Jams”, at two Grande exhibits. A 2,000 sq. foot mural commemorating MC5 was painted on the east aspect of the constructing in 2018, in celebration of the album’s fiftieth anniversary.
To an earlier era of Detroiters, the Grande was finest often known as a sublime West Aspect ballroom, which hosted dances and massive band events. It was sister venue to the East Aspect Self-importance Ballroom, which has undergone vital rehabilitation and improvement within the Jefferson Chalmers neighborhood.
In 2018, the Grande earned a spot on the Nationwide Register of Historic Locations, overseen by the Nationwide Park Service. Whereas this standing doesn’t present the safety supplied by another state and federal historic designations, it might present a monetary profit to a developer by Michigan’s new State Historic Tax Credit score program, enacted in late 2020.
Longtime Grande Ballroom advocate Leo Early, writer of “The Grande Ballroom: Detroit’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Palace” in 2016, stated officers at Chapel Hill Missionary had been discussing a potential sale for a number of years.
However the church had additionally had the thought of restoring the unused and vacant constructing itself – probably for blended residential and business use – together with new assembly area on the second flooring, website of the previous ballroom.
Demolition was prohibitively costly, Early stated.
This week’s gross sales itemizing claims that “it is a main mission for a severe developer who’s aware of large-scale initiatives; thus understanding the historical past related to the constructing and having the imaginative and prescient to revive an iconic monumental actual property within the metropolis of Detroit.
He additionally asks that the $5 million price ticket not intimidate potential patrons.
“Vendor will think about all good officers,” the itemizing reads.
Contact Detroit Free Press Music Author Brian McCollum: 313-223-4450 or [email protected]