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Ford Locates Autonomous and Electric Vehicle Teams in Detroit, Michigan

12/18/2017
Ford Motor Company plans to move its key autonomous vehicle and electric vehicle business and strategy teams to the city where the company got its start Detroit, Michigan.

The company will relocate its autonomous and electric vehicle business-strategy divisions, including Team Edison, into the recently renovated, 110-year-old, 45,000-square-foot historic former factory in Detroit’s Corktown neighborhood. More than 220 employees will be working at the new location, company officials said.

With its high ceilings, exposed brick, hardwood floors and 9,000-square-foot garage, the space will afford employees both the collaborative openness of a modern workspace and the industrial authenticity of a turn-of-the-century manufacturing facility.

Located at 1907 Michigan Avenue, the brick building complex was constructed in 1907, the year planning began on the Ford Model T at the nearby Piquette Avenue plant.

Most recently, The Factory has served as headquarters for Buhl Sport Detroit and Brothers Tuning Detroit, and has undergone extensive renovations. The Factory will continue to be the headquarters for both companies, which will be Ford Land tenants.

Corktown location will be up and running early next year, allowing autonomous vehicle and electric vehicle teams numbering more than 200 people to immerse themselves in the mobility challenges and solutions in an urban setting, company officials said.

“We’re excited to choose this inspirational location in one of Detroit’s resurgent neighborhoods to accelerate our work on electric and autonomous vehicles,” said Jim Hackett, Ford President & CEO. “This move and our exciting Dearborn campus transformation are important steps as we move toward our aspiration to become the world’s most trusted mobility company, designing smart vehicles for a smart world.”

The Corktown location holds special meaning for Executive Chairman Bill Ford, whose ancestors emigrated from County Cork, Ireland, to the Dearborn, Michigan, area years ago. Corktown, Detroit’s oldest neighborhood, derives its name from immigrants from County Cork who settled there.

“Returning to Detroit is particularly meaningful, because it is where my great-grandfather originally set out to pursue his passion and where we have always called our home,” said Ford. “We are planting a special piece of our company’s future in one of the city’s great neighborhoods, because we believe in Detroit, its people and what we can build together.”

“Having these teams together in a dedicated facility in the heart of Detroit is truly a full-circle moment for Ford,” said Jim Farley, Ford Executive Vice President & President, Global Markets. “It’s such a conducive environment for sharing ideas, for collaboration, and for accelerating our electric vehicle efforts. We have such a great team, and we’ll be hearing more from them in the coming months.”

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