In the southern end of West Bloomfield, Michigan stands a large one-story building that boasts “Performance Automotive” in bold letters. The building’s vivid red pillars harken back to a time when the best of Chevrolet sports vehicles dominated the now-vacant parking lot. Shining Corvettes once glistened in the vast showroom to be coveted by onlookers driving past on Orchard Lake Road. Up until 2019 the location continued to sell, service, and repair vehicles.
The land at 7020 Orchard Lake Road was purchased in 2020 by Hunter Pasteur Homes and The Forbes Company, with plans to reinvent the site. Before this could happen, environmental testing was needed due to the long history of automotive activities, many of which occurred before environmental regulations were in place. Following extensive environmental assessment activities conducted by PM Environmental (PM), former underground storage tanks (USTs), hydraulic hoists, and soil and groundwater contamination were identified. It was also determined that the identified contamination presents a vapor intrusion risk which requires mitigation prior to development. PM assisted the developer in determining a remediation plan for the property that would allow their project to proceed.
This plan includes a large-scale excavation to remove contaminated soil and groundwater. Clean soil will be brought in to replace any contaminated soil that was removed, thus eliminating a contaminated property and the concerns that would have otherwise hindered development.
To accomplish this, PM worked with the development team to prepare and obtain approval of a Brownfield Plan and Act 381 Work Plan. As a result, the developer will receive reimbursement of the activities that present a challenge for redevelopment through the new taxes generated by the project. Under Public Act 381 the Township, County, and State approved a tax increment financing plan for reimbursement up to $2.7 million in brownfield related costs over the course of five years. “This project is an excellent example of why Public Act 381 exists,” said Jessica DeBone, PM Environmental’s Regional Manager of Economic Incentive. “Without the incentive, the degree to which this property could be cleaned up and revitalized would be greatly diminished. I’m looking forward to seeing the positive change this beautiful development will bring to the corridor and the Township.”
When demolition and remediation are complete, a bright future lies ahead for this property. The developer, Hunter Pasteur, is a company that specifically constructs upscale Class-A apartments with premium amenities in markets that lack them. The Perennial brand elicits luxury and a tailored lifestyle. They aim to combine timeless designs with cutting-edge technology, including LEED building design practices.
Carrying on the location’s heritage of high-class offerings, the Perennial West Bloomfield project will create 213 luxury apartments with 355 parking spaces, including several electric vehicle charging stations, and amenities that create a vacation-like lifestyle for residents. This 5-story building will include a 22,000 square-foot pool terrace, private offices for residents who work remotely, community entertainment spaces, and fitness facilities. A front entry court will be constructed outside the main lobby to include two garden seating spaces and a multi-purpose plaza and a landscaped pedestrian walkway with seating areas will connect the building to Orchard Lake Road. This development is expected to increase property values in the area and bring in additional property tax revenues for the city.
There is a growing demand for residential space within West Bloomfield. Hunter Pasteur believes that the Detroit and Metro-Detroit market have a need for a diversity of housing types, specifically new construction, highly amenitized luxury rental developments. Such developments exist throughout most secondary and tertiary markets, but there has been a void in this local market.
“Our development will have immense benefits for West Bloomfield. In addition to environmental benefits and tax benefits, our project with help attract and retain residents to West Bloomfield,” said Seth Herkowitz, COO and Partner of Hunter Pasteur. “Those residents will in turn help support local business and make positive contributions to the community. Further, our project design and objectives align with the township’s vision and goals for the township center overlay district in which our project is located.”
Demolition will begin in spring of 2022 and construction will take an estimated 18 months.