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Michigan Developments Win Awards for Impact

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, Mich. – Three local property developments were honored during the 12th annual CREW (Commercial Real Estate Women) Impact Awards Sept. 18 at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills, and a well-known developer took home the first-ever Catalyst Award from CREW Detroit.

Each year CREW Detroit recognizes the owners, developers, contractors, architects and engineers of projects or developments that have made the biggest impact on Southern Michigan communities. Three Impact Awards are given out each year in the prestigious competition: one for renovation or adaptive reuse, one for new construction, and a Special Impact award that recognizes an outstanding redevelopment or new construction project.

This year CREW Detroit presented a fourth award, which hasn’t been done before and isn’t necessarily something that will be done again. The 2013 Catalyst Award went to Bedrock Development, which has submitted Detroit redevelopment projects in the CREW Impact Awards for the past three years and each year has only lost by one point.

The winners of this year’s traditional Impact Awards were the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan BLUnite Building in Detroit for redevelopment, Whole Foods Market in Detroit for new construction, and the Lafayette Place Lofts in Pontiac for Special Impact. The Christman Company was the contractor on BLUnite, Sachse Construction was the contractor on Whole Foods and West Construction Services was the contractor on Lafayette Place.

The positive impact communities are experiencing as a result of the winning projects is what the CREW Impact Awards are all about. Here’s a little more about the honored developments:

  •  With the BLUnite redevelopment project, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan was able to facilitate the single largest move in the state of Michigan, bringing 3,000 people in just 13 months from Southfield to downtown Detroit. The renovation encompassed six facilities, including the celebrated Renaissance Center.
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  • Detroit residents lacked access to fresh fruits and vegetables until the new Whole Foods Market opened in the city’s Midtown district. Because of its importance to the area, Sachse Construction worked diligently with Whole Foods Market to engage the local community in the development.
  • Lafayette Place Lofts was the largest development in Pontiac in more than 30 years and is the first of several new projects downtown. It includes 46 residential lofts, a market with outdoor seating, and a 24-hour fitness facility. The project, built to achieve LEED® Platinum certification, provides the city’s very first fitness center and the first fresh market in downtown Pontiac in over 40 years.
  • CREW judges evaluated award entries for 16 different projects across Southern Michigan. The 2013 CREW Impact Award judges were Jana Ecker, Planning Director for the City of Birmingham; Jill Ferrari, CEO of Michigan Community Resources; Tim Kay, Senior Vice President of Jones Lang LaSalle; Lawrence R. Marantette, Partner at Taktix Solutions; Janice Purcell, Principal of Purcell Interiors; Carl Roehling, FAIA, LEED AP, President and CEO of SmithGroupJJR; Jennette Smith, Managing Editor at Crain’s Detroit Business; and Michael P. Smith, Executive Vice President of Associate General Contractors (AGC) of Michigan.

    CREW Detroit expanded its region for Impact Award entries this year to include the counties of Oceana, Newaygo, Mecosta, Isabella, Midland, Bay and Huron; and everything below. To learn more about the CREW Impact Awards or read about past winners, visit

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