Success breeds success.

We received word Tuesday that The Lofts At Merchants Row — one of the developments that was nearer to the beginning of the downtown Detroit real estate rush — is expanding, adding 42 more loft-style apartments and two storefront first floor retail spaces.

Construction has begun on The Pepper Shoe Building, also known as the Valpey Building, that Schostak Bros. & Co. acquired some two plus years ago. The 54,000 square foot building will go through $10 million in renovations by the end of it all, including combining the building at the north end with another Lofts of Merchants Row building at 1425 Woodward.

The purchase price on the Valpey building a couple of years ago? Just $500,000.

Detroit-based Sachse Construction is the general contractor on the project and Detroit-based Kraemer Design Group is the architect. Part of construction process will includes exterior work to bring back original architectural features such as decorative balconies and carvings. Check out the picture from back in the day — 1896, to be exact.


There will be a range of sizes for the lofts. 631 sq. ft. studios, one bedrooms that range 784 sq. ft.- 952 sq. ft. and also 1,041 sq. ft. two bedroom / two bath units will be available.

A quick perusal of the Lofts website shows that currently only two of the nearly 160 units currently in the development are available, running from just under $1,000 to nearly $1,600 a month.

Amenities include, according to the developers, walk-in full tile showers with built in bench, hardwood floors, granite countertops with stainless steel sinks, stackable washers and dryers, open and spacious floor plans with high ceilings and historic style large pane windows, 24-hour state-of-the-art Life Fitness cardio and strengthening center as well as a 24-hour state-of-the-art covered valet parking garage.

Construction is in progress, and roof work has been completed. They’re aiming for occupancy to begin in April of 2016.

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