Nicole Curtis blasts 'just crap' housing next to her Brush Park mansion makeover in Detroit

July 04, 2022, 9:51 AM

"Modern, prefab" newcomers hug the 19th century house jarringly, Nicole Curtis says. (Photo: Max Broock Realtors)

"Disposable architecture" clashes with a graceful 1876 residence on Alfred Street in Detroit, in the eyes of TV producer Nicole Curtis. 

Nicole Curtis in the mansion last decade. (Photo: HGTV)

"I absolutely hate it; it breaks my heart," she says to Crain's Detroit Business about residential additions on two sides of the Ranson Gillis House in Brush Park that the Lake Orion designer upgraded in 2015 for her "Rehab Addict" cable show on HGTV. 

"It's flanked by ugly, square box, modern, prefab, just crap. It was a real miss on the part of the city.

"It didn't even cross my mind that anyone would go in there and smoosh Ransom Gillis into that kind of space. It's all disposable architecture."

Bedrock Detroit, the development arm of Dan Gilbert's group, erected apartment and condo buildings in a project called City Modern just north of downtown.

The jarring contrast between modern and classic styles reflects a missed opportunity, the celebrity rehabber tells Arielle Kass:

Curtis said she expected the city to add density while still respecting the historic homes and is disappointed by the outcome.

"I lost a year of my life and then you put that next to it?" she said. "It would've been such a kick-ass area." ...

Spokespeople for the city of Detroit, the Rocket Community Fund and Bedrock LLC, which partnered on the redevelopment, declined to comment on Curtis' opinions of the neighborhood.

An apartment building in City Modern abuts the 144-year-old mansion. (Photo: Bedrock Detroit)

A condo in the Ranson Gillis landmark is up for sale at $1.9 million.


Gallery, Video Show How Nicole Curtis Rehabbed Newly Listed Detroit Mansion in Brush Park, June 16

Read more:  Crain's Detroit Business

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