Developer has new proposal for west downtown

Times-Herald Newspapers

DEARBORN — Dearborn Village Partners Limited Liability Co. principal Hakim Fakhoury has a new proposal for a west downtown development on city-owned land, the Times-Herald has learned.

The Dearborn native said last week in an e-mail exchange that the proposal was submitted to the city in February, before the latter agreed to extend a preferred developer’s agreement. The agreement gives DVP exclusive development rights for the parking lot on Garrison between Howard and Military.

A rough project outline compiled by Fakhoury’s potential partner in the enterprise, developer Jeff Helminski of Moravian Companies, calls for a four-story, 160-unit complex comprising residential and commercial components with an estimated development cost of $31 million.

The facility would include 16 studios, 16 three-bedroom units, 48 two-bedroom units and 80 one-bedroom units. Based on an assumption of 1.75 people per unit, the proposal projects 280 new residents to the area.

In addition to the residential element, the building would include about 25,000 square feet of ground floor retail space. Abutting the building on the east and west sides would be two-story parking garages with a combined total of 384 spaces.

A conference call between the city and the developers is scheduled tentatively for later this month, according to e-mails exchanged between Fakhoury and city officials. Fakhoury did not respond to a request for a telephone interview for this story before press time.

In related news, city officials agreed to halt demolition proceedings on three Michigan Avenue buildings owned by Fakhoury. The former Giuliano’s restaurant, Brother’s Tuxedo and Bally’s Vic Tanny – all of which are on the same block or across the street from the proposed DVP project – have been vacant for years, and the city has been trying to get them torn down for nearly as long.

The reprieve was granted conditional to some aesthetic work being conducted on the buildings, including power washing, construction material cleanup and covering the windows with opaque film. Also, the city required that Fakhoury remove “The Dream is Over – For Sale” signs that he posted in several of his properties back in March.

The signs were a public proclamation of his frustration with city officials, he said at the time.