American Axle considers $460 million EV supplier park, 1,110 jobs in Detroit

American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings Inc. is considering a $460 million electric vehicle research and supplier park adjacent to its Detroit headquarters in a project that would create 1,110 jobs, according to city documents.

The plan, called Project Orb, involves the redevelopment of the 50-acre former manufacturing property near the automotive supplier’s campus at Holbrook Avenue and St. Aubin Street, along the Hamtramck border.

The “office/research and supplier park” would support the “concentration of the company’s EV investment in Detroit and Michigan rather than competing international and other domestic locations,” according to a project synopsis included in a city document.

The axle and auto parts manufacturer, whose largest customer is General Motors, is seeking $100 million in statutory and discretionary incentives from the state’s Critical Industry Program — part of the Strategic Outreach and Attraction Reserve Fund signed into law in late 2021.

In a statement Wednesday to Crain’s Detroit Business, an affiliate of Automotive News, American Axle said it had “nothing to announce and no immediate plans for development. If favorable conditions present, AAM would consider investment in Detroit thanks to our positive relationship with the City.”

The Michigan Economic Development Corp., which administers state incentives, declined to provide details.

“Unfortunately, I don’t have any information to share on an American Axle investment,” spokesman Otie McKinley said in an email.

In addition to the SOAR request, Project Orb has received $5 million for site preparation through the city of Detroit Housing and Revitalization Department, which was awarded a $25 million blight elimination grant from the State Land Bank Authority.

“This is a competitive project that requires flexibility on uses of $5 million to support site readiness on the site,” the city document said.

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