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T-Head

Before and After – The Sad Story of the Packard Plant

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We have put together a post on The Old Motor using photos above from the Detroit Free Press showing the past and the sad state of

affairs at the Packard Plant today. The situation that whole complex is in, remains very serious and it now appears that the great

majority of it may end up being razed. Take the time to stop by and see many more photos of the plant at its prosperous times and

today, close to death after being taken off of life support.

You can also see the many incredible photos and a video that we have linked to on the Detroit Free Press website that YOU NEED TO SEE.

Just scroll down and you will see six links.

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Edited by T-Head (see edit history)

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I live about 3 miles from the former Mosler Safe Co. main plant in Hamilton, OH. It was just shuttered about 10 years ago, and this year they've been leveling the property. It took months to tear down the main building, which was literally built like brick and cement bunker. It had been the largest safe factory in the U.S. for 110 years.

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As of about 2 weeks ago it's a brick and concrete strewn empty lot.

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The one time I drove through Detroit, in 1984, I neglected to visit the former Packard factory. From an architectural and engineering perspective, it was a significant milestone and some parts were darned handsome, too. From what I've seen on various AACA threads, though, it has become a post-apocolyptic disaster that has for too long afflicted this hard-challenged city. Firefighters and police flatly refuse to set foot on the property. A barren wasteland will be a huge improvement, I say.

What is it with North America? Why do we disrespect the intrinsic, irreplaceable value of land? Too many of our cities, in Canada and the US, have huge swaths of either derelict industrial ruins like the Packard mess or sterilized gravel parking lots, taking up entire blocks of the urban core. They generate little or no municipal tax, while cities are strapped with trying to provide services to spanking-new industrial and residential sprawl, which swell year-by-year across the surrounding wheat fields.

Corporate accountants and tax lawyers (who are really anti-tax lawyers, aren't they?) smugly tell us that is must be so, that filling in the blanks is not a capital-enhancing strategy. Oh well, I do my part for The Resistance. I live centrally in a not-so-big house on a narrow lot with too danged many old trees spoiling the view. The sewer and water mains running along my street were installed over a century ago and they smell like it. Worst of all, my double-and-a-half garage - the biggest that zoning regs would allow - is too small to accommodate my bad habits.

Actually, that lower photo looks a lot like the Parthenon, before the Athens Tourist Bureau tidied it up for visitors.

Edited by Rob McDonald (see edit history)

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There are a few little business in operation in parts of the plant. I use to have to go there and pick up parts before I retired and it was a scary place to go to, especially at night. sad to say it really does need to go. So sad but many building downtown are beyond saving, like the old Grand Central Station, Cadillac plant etc...

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It is all very sad and unfortunate about what has happened in Detroit, with the rest of the auto industry and with others elsewhere. Unfortunately the one constant in life and time good or bad is change and that is what we are all witnessing. Detroit will never be the same but it appears to be slowly coming back in other ways.

Many thanks to all for your input, here and on The Old Motor.

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