Though the rumors have been circulating wildly for months, the Illitch Family's Olympia Entertainment confirmed the actual outlines of their proposed entertainment and sports arena complex today in a special meeting of the Downtown Development Authority.
The Illitches also thrust north Downtown's divey Temple Bar smack in the center of the future downtown Detroit. Their new complex, which includes an 18,000-seat hockey / mixed-use sporting arena and a smattering of other entertainment and housing development projects, will connect the Masonic Temple area with the immediate downtown, sowing seeds of development and business along the way.
Temple Bar, a Detroit icon for decades, has been described as both a divey paradise and a no-holds-barred gay bar. The Olympia arena development — which will run between Woodward and I-75 up to Temple — is set to include a new hotel-retail development, several mixed use development strips and a whole slew of bars and restaurants.
Just how Temple Bar, a popular and increasingly lively staple in the downtown drinking circle, will fit in on the edge of a $650 million development sporting an "urban look" and an "urban feel" is anyone's guess.
· Plans unveiled for $650M Red Wings arena, entertainment district in Detroit [Det News]
· New Red Wings Arena Revealed, Massive Development Planned [Curbed Detroit]
· Outlines of the entertainment district [Olympia Entertainment]