Condos to Replace Rochester Elevator Location

Historic Landmark Location May Soon Be History

Rumors have been going up and down the streets of town that the Rochester Elevator has been sold and will soon be replaced with condominiums. For 136 continuous years, the big red historic landmark has served the public in Downtown Rochester.

The Rochester Elevator Location May Soon Be Condos - photo by Michael Dwyer

The Rochester Elevator Location May Soon Be Condos – photo by Michael Dwyer

The former Mayor of Rochester said he wanted to see condos go in at that location and to see the building moved across the street. Rochester Media could not clarify what “across the street” meant – parking lots for the library and post office occupy the spaces directly across University Drive now.

It looks as though the condo rumor from last year is the current hearsay; and the speculation is that the Elevator Barn will be moved to a nearby park.

Here is The Community Edge Story from a year ago: What Will Happen to the Rochester Elevator?



About Michael Dwyer

Michael Dwyer is a freelance content provider. Michael writes about happenings in the Rochester area, travels across Michigan and destinations around the world. Contact him at


  1. As if Rochester needs another set of luxury condos?!? This is really heart-breaking. Where is the historic council – why aren’t they doing anything to keep the integrity of Historic Downtown?

    • Until downtown Rochester has an official historic district or districts, there is nothing the Rochester Historical Commission or the Historic Districts Study Committee can do. The city can and has been allowing developers to develop. Even if a historic district is finally in place, the City of Rochester has put in the provision that the owner of a property in a district can opt-out of it. Thus making the whole point of a historic district a moot one.

  2. Teresa Schroeder says

    Sickening. Does Rochester really need more condos? The government of this city is ruining this town. It is losing it’s small town neighbour feel which is what attracted people here to begin with.

  3. Historical Society is too busy working on the dentist building South of the free parking on Walnut. They are useless!

    • David Gifford says

      William, the Historical Society is not working on or against the dentist building. The lawsuit is between the dentist and the city of Rochester and the Planning Commission. Get your facts straight before you go accusing anyone. The Historical Society is a non profit that exists for the sole purpose of collecting and interpreting historical information to the public and someday have a museum where artifacts can be seen.

  4. Find somewhere else for the condos

  5. Because the other 4-5 condo developments going up are not enough in a city of only a few square miles. I’m not sure that they will be able to sell them all once the only things to look at in the city are condos and traffic jams.

  6. Sue Ann Douglas says

    Does anyone know if this is true or just rumor? If it’s true, it’s one more business gone from the downtown. We now have more multiple housing than single family housing in this town and removing commercial property from the downtown doesn’t help the downtown. Get real folks. Anyone who lives in this city has to leave it to do shopping to meet their daily needs now.
    Ours ’boutique downtown’ doesn’t have a grocery store. Look around you. Most strip centers have a grocery store as an anchor. The downtown needs more commercial growth not less.

    • William Watkins says

      The closest Downtown had to a grocery store anchor was that KMart at Avon and Rochester that went out last year.

      • I would say Hollywood Mkt qualifies

      • Nancy Boughner says

        There was an A&P store on Main Street where the Athletic Club is now. I really miss that store. We also no longer have any school buildings inside the borders of the city. North Hill School and McGregor schools are in Rochester Hills.

  7. Lindsey R says

    This is so unnecessary!!! Rochester doesn’t need anymore condos. Leave this building and its history alone

  8. Cheryl Dolmage says

    It would be great if progress could stand still, but we all know that does not happen, anywhere. It would be a good use of this historic barn band true landmark if we could reconstruct it at the site of the current Farmers Market and have en market venues in the bottom level for the Farmers Market and maybe that missing grocery type market on the upper level( which would be street level on the west) there is a Niemans in Tawas City that could provide the proto type for what would be successful, just a thought guys.

  9. I hope the Condo are Ranch. I would like to move out of my home and move into a Condo, the only problem no Ranch condo’s. I would love to live downtown in a ranch condo.

  10. elizabeth conroy powers says

    All for the love of money. People don’t care about the history of the town they live in. But the people that have lived in Rochester all their life keep seeing piece by piece being taken away. Rochester’s Council years ago worked on keeping the town with the small town feeling the same,no matter what. It really is sad for the town. If you want high rise condos go to Troy or keep going to a big town. Rochester was always meant to be quaint and village like.

  11. David W Howe says

    That landmark is one of the things that attracts people to Rochester, it gives the town it’s small town feeling. I know people want to live there and housing may be short but it doesn’t make sense to ruin the place you like so you can live there! In my opinion all efforts need to be made to save Rochester grain elevator.

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