Historic Detroit

Stevens Building

The Stevens Building is the oldest building in the Washington Boulevard Historic District. It was built in 1901 and originally intended to be an adjunct facility for the nearby city YMCA. At the time it was constructed, the boulevard was still largely residential.

The eight-story building was designed by Donaldson & Meier, a prominent Detroit architectural firm responsible for a number of church designs and the David Stott Building, among many others.

This building’s most stunning feature is its “facade of varying window types crowned by a massive corbeled and arcaded Italian Romanesque style cornice treatment,” according to the city’s historic district report.

At some point, the building house Manufacturers National Bank, and an Art Moderne-style facade was slapped on the lower levels in the ’30s or ’40s.

On March 21, 2016, it was announced that the Stevens and the 127-unit Industrial Apartments next door were sold to a joint venture between the Roxbury Group and Invest Detroit, which vowed to keep them affordable senior housing even though downtown’s renaissance is seeing skyrocketing rents and similar low-income buildings converted into trendy apartments and lofts.

The pair of historic skyscrapers began renovations in early 2018.