Which Detroit Neighborhoods may be the Next to Invest In | Team Virkus

Which Detroit Neighborhoods may be the Next to Invest In | Team Virkus

Article by, Brent Virkus Founder of Motor City Design Build and Member of Team Virkus

Metro Detroit is one of the fastest growing residential markets in the country. Some of the best performing Detroit neighborhoods have been Indian Village, the University District, Sherwood Forest, Boston Edison District and Palmer Woods. Although there is still significant upside in these Detroit neighborhoods, the question is which Detroit neighborhoods are next? Here are three Detroit neighborhoods that may be the next to to invest in:

Russell Woods


Most of Russell Woods was built in the roaring 20’s. Sullivan built the back half in the 30’s -40’s and the famed Black Architect Nathan Johnson built Moderne and Bauhaus influenced homes in the 50’s. Russell Woods was granted Historic designation in 1999. Russell Woods is currently the largest historic district in Detroit.

One of the reasons Russell Woods does not have the blight of adjoining neighborhoods is because the active Area Association which was incorporated in 1958. There is a rich history that includes prominent and famous residents. This includes Nicholas Hood, Charlie Beckham, The Supremes, Dina Washington and Night Train Lane. Russell Woods also has a long line of prominent Jewish and Anglo residents including the Winklemans, The founder of Arbor Drugs, the Founder of Lays Potato Chips, the inventor of Jiffy Pop, and Warren Pierce (WJR). Russell Woods was a very inclusive, as well as, exclusive community. Mixed in with the doctors, engineers, educators and lawyers were blue collar and vocational workers.

West Village


West Village is a historic district roughly bounded by Jefferson, Kercheval, Parker, and Seyburn Avenues in Detroit, Michigan. Adjacent to the west is the Islandview neighborhood, and adjacent to the east is Indian Village. The district received its name in the mid 20th century because of its location just west of the more well-known Indian Village Historic District.[2] It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

The areas adjacent to Jefferson Avenue were one of the most exclusive residential addresses in turn-of-the-century Detroit. When the area that is now West Village was platted around that time, the incorporation of restrictions regarding structure cost, use, setback, and height ensured that this area too would be popular. Between 1905 and 1925, the neighborhood rapidly filled with upper-middle-class homes, apartment buildings, and row houses. The neighborhood was home to a number of prominent Detroiters including Franz C. Kuhn, Chief Justice of the Michigan Supreme Court, Edwin C. Denby, Secretary of the Navy, Theodore Hinchman, president of the architectural firm of Smith, Hinchman and Grylls, and sculptor Julius Melchers. As in many Detroit neighborhoods, the racial tensions and white exodus to the suburbs following World War II led to a decline of the neighborhood. However, the resurgence of nearby Indian Village in the 1970s created a resurgence in interest in the neighborhood. The West Village Association, a neighborhood association, was formed in 1974.

Rosedale Park


Rosedale Park is a historic district located in Detroit, Michigan. It is roughly bounded by Fenkell, Outer Drive, Grand River Avenue, Southfield Freeway, Glastonbury Street, Lyndon Street and Westwood Drive. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2006. The Rosedale Park district has the largest number of individual properties of any district nominated to the National Register of Historic Places in Michigan. The district contains primarily brick houses, and was largely developed from the late 1920s through the 1940s.

The land on which Rosedale Park sits was originally deeded in 1835 to Otis C. Freeman and George Bellamy as two 80-acre parcels. Over time, these parcels were subdivided until in 1916 the Rosedale Park Land Development Company purchased and platted a large portion of what was to become the Rosedale Park Historic District. This development company platted other projects in addition to Rosedale Park, most notably the North Rosedale Park neighborhood directly across Grand River Avenue. The company considered the location amenable to development because of its proximity to Grand River Avenue, a direct link to downtown Detroit, and the contemporaneous construction of Outer Drive.

Interest in the new subdivision was immediate, and in 1917, the Rosedale Park Land Development Company platted an addition to the original area. However, the actual construction in the neighborhood was slow—from 1917 until the end of World War I, only 15 houses had been constructed. However, construction soon blossomed, and in 1921 a third addition was platted. The city of Detroit annexed the subdivision in 1926, bringing water and sewer to the neighborhood and making the area more attractive.

Compared with other contemporary neighborhoods, such as Palmer Woods and the Grosse Pointes, Rosedale Park has more modest house and lot sizes reflecting the solidly middle and upper-middle class status of the original homeowners. Many of these original homeowners were professionals, such as doctors and dentists, and accountants, or had white-collar jobs in the booming automobile industry.

With the onset of the Great Depression in 1929, building in the area slowed, but in 1934, as the FHA made credit more available, construction again resumed, and another growth spurt in the neighborhood occurred in the late 1930s and early 1940s. By the 1950s, there was a house on nearly every lot in the neighborhood. In the later part of the century, as the population in Detroit declined, Rosedale Park has remained a desirable neighborhood due to its high grade housing stock, charming setting and active neighborhood association.

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Written by Brent Virkus

Brent Virkus

Brent Virkus is President and CEO of Motor City Design Build and Member of Team Virkus. Brent has been in the Real Estate and Investment industry for over 20 years. | brent@motorcitydesignbuild.com | (586) 854-9203