Lear has purchased the ‘historic’ 119 State Street building in Detroit’s Capitol Park to create an innovation and design centre the supplier claimed would be “unlike anything the downtown area has ever seen”. It plans to turn the six-storey, 35,000 square foot building at the corner into a hub for art, creativity, automotive advanced concept development and hands-on learning for Detroit college students.

The building, which dates back to 1887 and originally housed Brown Brothers Cigar Manufacturers, will soon be home to programmes and facilities for automotive innovation, a non-automotive new business incubator, a think tank, creative design studio, an art gallery, Lear executive satellite offices, conference and meeting space and a rooftop garden. Construction is expected to begin soon; the project is slated for completion sometime next year.