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Zagster and Rock Ventures Bring Pedal Power to Downtown Detroit

First Bike Sharing Program in Detroit Focuses on Revitalization, Sustainability, Convenience and Cost-Effective Transportation

Zagster, one of the nation’s first bike sharing companies, announced it has partnered with Rock Ventures/Quicken Loans to launch Detroit’s first bike sharing program. Beginning today, Rock Ventures’ 9,200 team members in downtown Detroit can reserve and ride comfortable, city-friendly cruiser bikes, allowing them a healthy, convenient, sustainable and fun way to run errands, grab lunch, get to meetings or just exercise.

“With the success of public bike sharing programs around the world, more and more employers, real estate developers and universities are looking to offer a more customized, convenient and flexible program for tenants and employees,” said Timothy Ericson, co-founder and CEO of Zagster. “Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans have really stepped up to show the world that the Motor City is ready for a new set of wheels.”

Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Zagster has successfully launched bike sharing programs in large cities including Chicago, Boston and New York and is now doing so in Detroit’s burgeoning urban core.

Initially, 48 Breezer bikes will be available on-demand to Rock Ventures’ team members, and will be parked outside eight properties in and around Detroit’s central business district: Compuware, M@dison, One Woodward, 1528 Woodward Avenue, Chase Tower, Financial District Garage, 1001 Woodward Garage and Two Detroit Garage. Additional locations may be launched in future months.

After registering on Zagster’s website, riders simply text ‘start’ plus the bike number (e.g. ‘start 46′) to Zagster. A confirmation message with the access code for the lock box is texted back. This action reserves the bike for the remainder of the day or until the bike is returned. Riders text “end” to the same number, which releases the bike for the next rider. Bike reservations last up to 24 hours.

The Breezer Uptown bikes used by Zagster have won numerous awards for their lightweight yet durable frames. They are outfitted with spacious baskets ideal for transporting laptops and computer gear, take-out food or groceries. Riders can park their bikes anywhere they want using the included lock, allowing the ultimate in convenience. When done with their bike, riders simply return the bike back to the Zagster bike rack.

“The launch of Zagster in Detroit is another way we are activating our streets and helping our team members explore Detroit — on two wheels versus four,” said Jay Farner, Quicken Loans’ President and Chief Marketing Officer, adding that the company is sponsoring Zagster memberships for its team members. “Bike sharing fits in with our placemaking initiatives; we hope other downtown companies will follow our lead and consider bringing this perk to their team members.”

About Zagster
Founded in Philadelphia in 2007 as CityRyde and now headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., Zagster is one of the nation’s first bike sharing companies. Zagster is uniquely focused on contracting with property managers, hotels, businesses, and universities across North America to make bike sharing programs available to tenants, employees, guests and students. This highly efficient and unique model allows Zagster to offer services in areas that traditional city-wide bike sharing systems can’t reach. More information about Zagster is available online at www.Zagster.com.

About Rock Ventures
Detroit-based Rock Ventures LLC is an umbrella entity managing a diverse portfolio of companies, investments and real estate. Rock Ventures’ flagship company is Quicken Loans, the nation’s largest online home lender and third largest overall residential mortgage lender. To learn more visit www.opportunitydetroit.com.

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Detroit Leaders Launch Opportunity Detroit’s Placemaking and Retail Vision for City’s Urban Core

- Bold, aggressive plan to create top urban center  -

Detroit, March 28, 2013—Rock Ventures, joined by the Downtown Detroit Partnership (DDP) and Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, today shared a visionary placemaking and retail plan for Detroit’s urban core with more than 400 business, community and civic leaders and key stakeholders.

This bold and aggressive plan is part of the Opportunity Detroit initiative to encourage people to live, work, play and invest in the city of Detroit. Powered by Rock Ventures, it combines more than seven months of research and engagement with key Detroit public and private stakeholders and incorporates the best thinking of four top urban consulting firms:  Project for Public Spaces, Shook Kelly, Gibbs Planning Group and Terremark Partners.

“Downtown Detroit’s geographic location and particularly the half mile from the Detroit River to Grand Circus Park is the most concentrated diversity of urban assets and placemaking opportunities anywhere in the world,” said Fred Kent, Founder of Project for Public Spaces. “From the riverfront, gaming, gourmet dining, sports, culture and entertainment to new retail, Detroit has a winning combination of attractions to reclaim its rightful place as a great American city on the international stage.”

Placemaking is about creating activity and vibrant, exciting places using a multi-faceted approach to the planning, design and management of public spaces. In Detroit it is about getting as many people out on the street experiencing and enjoying the various assets the city’s urban core has to offer.

The plan is centered on creating six distinct and unique destinations that draw people to the region, give them an experience that will make them want to return frequently and where they will want to spend more time.  Woodward Avenue becomes a major boulevard connecting these great destinations.

George W. Jackson, Jr., president and CEO of Detroit Economic Growth Corporation said, “We know what works from our successes promoting places such as the Paradise Valley Cultural and Entertainment District. You start with a well-designed public space, encourage organized activities there, and thoughtfully redevelop key buildings around that space to create a neighborhood with an authentic and memorable identity. This is a great time to replicate that success in several other Downtown places, and we are pleased that we have the public-private collaborations to do it.”

Much of the groundwork for this latest bold effort was laid in the past few years by the corporate, foundation, education and health care organizations that continue to reinvest in the city. It also ties together the threads created by Rock Ventures’ purchase of 22 buildings, 3 million square feet of commercial real estate, and nearly $1 billion invested in the Central Business District since 2010.

“Detroit stakeholders need to know this vision is real,” said Dan Gilbert, Chairman and Founder of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans. “It is a wildly-exciting, incredibly well-thought out plan that will be activated immediately.  Residents, office workers and visitors will experience a dramatically different Detroit in two years. We are committed to impacting the outcome and we are relentless in getting every Detroiter to join us in this campaign.”

 

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About Downtown Detroit Partnership
Downtown Detroit Partnership is a private/public partnership of corporate and civic leaders that supports, advocates and develops programs and initiatives designed to create a clean, safe, beautiful, inviting, vibrant and economically viable Downtown Detroit community. www.downtowndetroit.org

About Project for Public Spaces (PPS)
Project for Public Spaces (PPS), based in New York City, is a nonprofit planning, design and educational organization dedicated to helping people create and sustain public spaces that build stronger communities. Their pioneering placemaking approach helps citizens transform their public spaces into vital places that highlight local assets, spur rejuvenation and serve common needs. PPS was founded in 1975 to expand on the work of William (Holly) Whyte, the author of The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces. Since then, PPS has completed projects in more than 2,500 communities in 40 countries and all 50 U.S. states. Partnering with public and private organizations, federal, state and municipal agencies, business improvement districts, neighborhood associations and civic groups, they improve communities by fostering successful public spaces. In its broadest application, placemaking is a catalyst for building healthy, sustainable and economically viable cities of the future. www.pps.org

About Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC)
Detroit Economic Growth Corporation is a non-profit organization that serves as the lead implementing agency for business retention, attraction and economic development initiatives in the city of Detroit. DEGC is led by a 60-member board comprised of business, civic, labor and community leaders. Its 40 professionals provide staff services for key public authorities that offer tax credits and other forms of financing for projects that bring new jobs or economic activity to the city. Among them: the Downtown Development Authority (DDA), Detroit Brownfield Redevelopment Authority (DBRA), Economic Development Corporation (EDC), Neighborhood Development Corporation (NDC), Local Development Finance Authority (LDFA), and Tax Increment Finance Authority (TIFA). DEGC also provides planning, project management and other services under contract to the City of Detroit. www.downtowndetroit.org

About Rock Ventures

Detroit-based Rock Ventures LLC is an umbrella entity managing a diverse portfolio of companies, investments and real estate. Rock Ventures’ flagship company is Quicken Loans, the nation’s largest online home lender and third largest overall residential mortgage lender. www.opportunitydetroit.com

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Rock Ventures Wraps Up 2012 with Purchase of Five Downtown Properties

- The group’s Detroit real estate portfolio grows to 15 buildings in the
emerging technology corridor -

DETROIT, December 18, 2012 – Rock Ventures today announced the purchase of five additional properties, wrapping up a year in which it acquired eight buildings totaling 630,000 square feet of commercial space.

The newest acquisitions bring Rock Ventures’ downtown Detroit real estate investments to 15 buildings totaling 2.6 million square feet of commercial space, and three parking structures for a combined 3,500 parking spaces.

In addition, Rock Ventures broke ground on a 33,000 square-foot specialty retail development and 10-story parking garage last month, renovated 633,000 square feet of commercial space, and located 45 companies to the city, including Twitter, Chrysler, Metro-West Appraisal, and numerous technology related start-ups. Rock Ventures’ family of companies, including Quicken Loans and Title Source, has brought 7,000-plus people to work in downtown Detroit since August 2010.

“It has been an exciting year of opportunity in Detroit,” said Dan Gilbert, Founder and Chairman of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans. “Our focus in 2013 will be on the three R’s – residential, rail and retail – all of which are vital in creating the vibrant, thriving urban core that we all envision.”

Rock Ventures’ newest building acquisitions include:

  • 1201 Woodward – Kresge Building: The 54,000 square-foot property built in 1891 was home to the former Kresge store. The nine-story building, located on the northwest corner of Woodward Avenue and State Street, will be renovated to accommodate first floor retail and either office or residential space above. A portion of the first floor currently houses The Detroit Shoppe and Detroit Artist Market pop-up stores.
  • 1217 Woodward: This five-story 30,000 square-foot building is located on the west side of Woodward Avenue, immediately north of the Kresge Building. Built in 1891, the building will be renovated and used for first floor retail and either office or residential space above. A portion of the first floor currently houses Santa’s Wonderland, a seasonal store specifically for children with proceeds benefitting Detroit Goodfellows, ensuring there is “No Kiddie without a Christmas.”
  • 1412 Woodward: Located on the east side of Woodward Avenue between Grand River Avenue and John R Street, this three-story building was built in 1916. The 6,000 square-foot building is currently unoccupied, but will feature first floor retail with office space above.
  • 1301 Broadway – Cary Building Lofts: The 20,000 square-foot building, built in 1906, is located on the west corner of Gratiot Avenue and Broadway Street. The five-story structure will undergo extensive renovations to accommodate first floor retail space with residential space above.
  • 1521 Broadway – Small Plates Building: The 9,300 square-foot building is 100 percent occupied by Small Plates restaurant on the first floor with four residential loft apartments above. The five-story building is located on the west side of Broadway Street between John R and Witherell Street.

The building purchases were brokered by Bedrock Real Estate Services, Rock Ventures’ full-service real estate firm. Bedrock leases, develops and manages all of Rock Ventures’ buildings, and has helped locate more than 65 companies to downtown Detroit since August 2010.

“The need for retail and updated office and residential space in downtown Detroit is keeping Bedrock extremely busy,” said Jim Ketai, Managing Partner at Bedrock, adding that the firm has grown by nearly 60 percent in the past year to keep up with the demand.”

For more information about Bedrock Real Estate Services, please visit www.bedrockmgt.com.

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About Rock Ventures LLC
Rock Ventures LLC is an umbrella entity formed to provide operational coordination, guidance, and integration of Dan Gilbert’s portfolio of companies, investments and real estate. Rock Ventures’ flagship company is Quicken Loans, the nation’s largest online home lender and fourth largest retail lender.

About Bedrock Real Estate Services LLC
Bedrock Real Estate Services LLC is a full service real estate firm specializing in purchasing, leasing, financing, developing and managing of commercial space. The company, a partnership between Quicken Loans Founder and Chairman Dan Gilbert and veteran real estate developer Jim Ketai, is based in downtown Detroit. For more information, visit bedrockmgt.com.

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Rock Ventures Continues Investment in Downtown Detroit with Purchase of One Woodward Building

- Purchase brings total real estate holdings in downtown Detroit to nearly 2.5 million commercial square feet -

DETROIT, December 3, 2012 –  Rock Ventures, the umbrella entity providing operational coordination of Dan Gilbert’s portfolio of companies and investments, today announced it has added another 333,000 square feet of class-A downtown Detroit office space to its growing real estate portfolio.

The company completed the purchase of the 26-story One Woodward building, located on the corner of Jefferson and Woodward Avenue. Rock Ventures plans to renovate the building in order to accommodate the growing demand for space in the city’s emerging technology district.

Built in 1962, One Woodward was designed by famed architect Minoru Yamasaki, and is considered an early design that ultimately led Yamaski to create the former World Trade Center towers in New York City.

“The One Woodward building is located in the heart of Detroit’s technology core, and provides us more space to further accommodate our growing family of companies and the increasing number of businesses that want to leverage the opportunities made in Detroit,” said Dan Gilbert, Founder and Chairman of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans.

“We continue to bet big on Detroit, and this purchase reinforces our commitment to the exciting entrepreneurial action on Woodward Avenue,” Gilbert added.

The building is approximately 60 percent occupied, and will exceed 90 percent occupancy next month when Quicken Loans and its affiliates lease a total of eight floors in the building.  Some current tenants include the Detroit Regional Chamber and law firms Fraser Trebilcock Davis & Dunlap, and Kitch Drutchas Wagner Valitutti & Sherbrook.

Purchase of the One Woodward building was co-brokered by Friedman Integrated Real Estate Solutions and Bedrock Real Estate Services LLC, Rock Ventures’ full-service real estate firm and developer for the project. Bedrock will also be responsible for overseeing the renovations, managing the property and leasing the space.

Since January 2011, Rock Ventures has purchased 10 buildings totaling nearly 2.5 million square feet of office space, in addition to two parking garages with a total of 3,500 parking spaces.  Last month, the company broke ground on a 33,000 square-foot specialty retail development with 10-story parking garage in downtown Detroit.

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About Rock Ventures LLC:
Rock Ventures LLC is an umbrella entity formed to provide operational coordination, guidance, and integration of Dan Gilbert’s portfolio of companies, investments and real estate. Rock Ventures’ flagship company is Quicken Loans, the nation’s largest online home lender and fourth largest retail lender.

About Bedrock Real Estate Services LLC:
Bedrock Real Estate Services LLC is a full-service real estate firm specializing in purchasing, leasing, financing, developing and managing of commercial space. The company, a partnership between Quicken Loans Founder and Chairman Dan Gilbert and veteran real estate developer Jim Ketai, is based in downtown Detroit. For more information, visit bedrockmgt.com.

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Chrysler Group Strengthens Commitment to City of Detroit

  • Chrysler Group to move Great Lakes Business Center and support other company functions to Rock Ventures’ Historic Dime Building

  • Building to be renamed Chrysler House as the latest feature of Downtown Detroit Skyline

DETROIT, April 30, 2012 — Chrysler Group LLC today announced that for the first time in its history, the Company will have an office presence in downtown Detroit. Chrysler Group will rename the historic Dime Building – Chrysler House – as it plans to move its Great Lakes Business Center and several corporate functions into the top two floors of the 23-story building.

Chrysler Group will lease nearly 33,000 square feet of space in the Dime Building, owned by Rock Ventures LLC, the umbrella entity formed to provide operational coordination, guidance and integration of Detroit businessman Dan Gilbert’s portfolio of companies, investments and real estate. The space will accommodate about 70 employees who will be located in the new offices. Refurbishments to the space will commence immediately and are expected to be completed by late summer.

“The future of Chrysler Group and the City of Detroit are inextricably tied,” said Sergio Marchionne, Chairman and CEO, Chrysler Group LLC. “In order to reflect this we want to go beyond spiritual or symbolic evidence of our faith in the City’s future by establishing a physical presence people can see and be proud of.”

“It’s very exciting that a company with the legacy and brand of Chrysler is joining the many other companies opening shop in Detroit, as we together help build downtown into the energetic, job-producing, high-tech corridor it is quickly becoming,” said Gilbert, Chairman of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans. “Chrysler has always been synonymous with Detroit, but today they can truly say they are ‘Imported from Detroit,’ as their presence makes them an important participant in the positive transformation of a great American city.”

This is the latest in a series of announcements Chrysler Group has made in recent months demonstrating the Company’s deepening commitment to the City of Detroit and Southeastern Michigan.

On January 5, the Company announced that it will be adding a third crew and 1,100 new jobs at its Jefferson North Assembly Plant (JNAP) in Detroit, expanding the Jeep Grand Cherokee lineup to include a diesel version for North America. The Company also announced its plans to reactivate its Conner Avenue Assembly Plant, also located in the Motor City, for production of the SRT Viper. The opening of the Conner Avenue plant will create 150 new jobs.

Within the City of Detroit, in addition to the JNAP and Conner Avenue plants, Chrysler Group operates the Mack Avenue Engine Complex on St. Jean Street. The Company employs nearly 4,000 people in the City of Detroit.

On January 6, Chrysler Group also announced that Marchionne will serve as Campaign Chair for the United Way for Southeastern Michigan’s (UWSEM) 2012 campaign. As Campaign Chair, Marchionne will be the face and voice of the UWSEM fundraising and education efforts and will work to promote the growth and impact of the campaign among businesses and individuals.

Located in the heart of Detroit at 719 Griswold Street, the Dime Building was built in 1912 by the Dime Savings Bank. It was designed in the Neo-classical style by Daniel Burnham, the famous Chicago-born architect whose other works are known worldwide, led by his famous Flatiron Building in New York City. The Dime building underwent extensive renovations in 2002.

The lease deal between Chrysler and Rock Ventures was brokered by Bedrock Real Estate Services LLC, Rock Ventures’ full service property management firm, specializing in purchasing, leasing, financing, developing and managing of commercial space.

About Chrysler Group LLC: Chrysler Group LLC, formed in 2009 to establish a global strategic alliance with Fiat S.p.A., produces Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram, Mopar, SRT and Fiat vehicles and products. With the resources, technology and worldwide distribution network required to compete on a global scale, the alliance builds on Chrysler Group’s culture of innovation, first established by Walter P. Chrysler in 1925, and Fiat’s complementary technology that dates back to its founding in 1899.

Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Mich., Chrysler Group’s product lineup features some of the world’s most recognizable vehicles, including the Chrysler 300 and Town & Country, Jeep Wrangler, all-new Dodge Dart, Ram 1500, Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 and Fiat 500. Fiat contributes world-class technology, platforms and powertrains for small- and medium-size cars, allowing Chrysler Group to offer an expanded product line including environmentally friendly vehicles.

Follow Chrysler news and video on: YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/pentastarvideo Chrysler Connect blog: http://blog.chryslergroupllc.com Twitter: www.twitter.com/chrysler Streetfire : http://members.streetfire.net/profile/ChryslerVideo.htm Corporate website: http://www.chryslergroupllc.com

About Rock Ventures LLC: Rock Ventures LLC is an umbrella entity formed to provide operational coordination, guidance, and integration of Dan Gilbert’s portfolio of companies, investments and real estate.

About Bedrock Real Estate Services LLC: Bedrock Real Estate Services LLC is a full service property management firm specializing in purchasing, leasing, financing, developing and managing of commercial space. The company, a partnership between Quicken Loans Founder and Chairman Dan Gilbert and veteran real estate developer Jim Ketai, is based in downtown Detroit. For more information, visit http://www.bedrockmgt.com .

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