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New Food Hall Coming to Eastern Market

Plus, Fly Trap returns and another crazy milkshake bar is coming to downtown

A rendering shows a white and orange food hall with people walking around outside.
Rendering by McIntosh Poris Associates
Serena Maria Daniels is the editor for Eater Detroit.

Part of the long-vacant former Detroit Water and Sewerage Department building at the northern end of Eastern Market is getting a new life as a food hall.

The building at 3500 Riopelle St. had been sold to Detroit-based developer Ventra LLC in 2017, with the expectation that the property be used as a new food business hub. Ventra, along with Calgary-based developer Halcor Group are redeveloping the 104,000-square-foot space as The Mosaic, featuring a 25,000-square-foot food hall with a 5,000-square-foot rooftop bar, according to a news release.

The Mosaic will house other creatives and entertainment spaces, but the food hall is the first confirmed tenant so far. Robert Montwaid, founder and creator of the now shuttered Gansevoort Market in New York City and Chattahoochee Food Works in Atlanta, is behind the food hall project. Construction on the Mosaic is expected to begin sometime this year.

Fly Trap returns

Beloved Ferndale brunch spot the Fly Trap is poised for a revival as soon as next month when fellow restaurateur Matt Buskard of the Bobcat Bonnie’s chain takes over ownership. The Detroit News reports that there are no plans to change anything about the diner’s approach.

Previous owners Kara and Gavin McMillian temporarily Fly Trap closed in September, citing troubles with staffing and difficulties striking a work-life balance, the News reports.

In a Facebook post, Buskard said that the Fly Trap was his favorite breakfast spot and that he felt awful when it closed.

“I reached out to our friends who own it to see if there was anything we could do to help them out. During COVID we saw Gavin and Kara work endlessly to keep this place open and given our resources, we thought we could help.

Our goal is simple- which is to keep the Fly Trap as the Fly Trap. There will be no cross overs, remixes, sharing of ideas, etc. We want to keep the magic that is the Fly Trap at the Fly Trap and vice versa,” says Buskard’s social media post.

Another milkshake bar

A milkshake topped with a gold colored star shaped marshmallow, candy, and a cookie
The “Gold Digger” milkshake from JoJo’s Shake Bar, coming this summer to downtown Detroit
Photo courtesy of JoJo’s Shake Bar

Illinois-based JoJo’s ShakeBAR, whose menu features extravagant milkshakes, is coming soon to downtown Detroit.

Set to open this summer in a 3,480 square-foot storefront on Columbia Street (the pedestrian-only strip next to the Fox Theatre), the space will have intense 80s and 90s vibes with murals of celebrities with milk mustaches, Pac-man cocktail tables, and “same-sider” booths.

As for the menu, burgers, sandwiches, soups, salads, and typical apps make up the food side, while cocktails named after old movies and hip hop artists will complement a slim beer and wine selection. The shakes are what one would expect in a “next-generation diner grounded in nostalgia,” with over-the-top creations like the... Gold Digger (a caramel toffee shake with toffee dodo, a giant gold star marshmallow, toffee pretzel, and an entire white chocolate macadamia nut cookie).