Despite the extremely hot temperatures, hundreds gathered in support of the Michigan Chronicle’s move to Paradise Valley in the early part of next year.
“The Michigan Chronicle has been an integrated part of the Detroit community for almost 80 years, so it is only natural that we center our operations in the heart of the resurgence of Detroit,” said Real Times Media CEO and Michigan Chronicle publisher Hiram E. Jackson.
The move will also serve as the new headquarters for the parent company Real Times Media. The multimedia company is also the parent company of other Black legacy papers: Chicago Defender, The New Pittsburgh Courier, Atlanta Daily World and many more.
“Real Times is the parent company of some of the most prestigious black newspapers across the company,” said Jackson. “The Chicago Defender was started in 1905, it was chiefly responsible for African American’s move to the north. The Pittsburgh Courier almost single-handedly brought color to Major League Baseball with Jackie Robinson and of course The Michigan Chronicle was started in 1936.”
Mayor Mike Duggan, Rev. Wendell Anthony, members of the Chronicle’s board of directors and many more were in attendance.
“Years ago, this area known as Paradise Valley was the mecca for African American business and opportunity,” said Anthony. “It was called ‘black bottom’ because of the deep, dark, black soil that occupied this area, on top of that soil came black people – which further enriched this area.”
With continuous cooperation and support from the Mayor’s office, Jenkins Construction, Detroit Economic Growth Corporation and Invest Detroit, the move was made possible.
“There is not a better business to serve as an anchor in Paradise Park than Real Times Media and the Michigan Chronicle,” said Rodrick Miller, president and CEO of Detroit Economic Growth Corporation. “The total capital investment associated with the renovation of this property is estimated at $3.1 million, the project is expected to create up to 36 new jobs for Real Times Media.”
Jackson shared with those in attendance his excitement to be a part of a rebirth of sorts with the historic site. The Chronicle first opened its doors in 1936 on Antoine Street. It was situated in the business and entertainment district of Paradise Park then.
It is now returning to the place of its birth.
“This is really just like coming home in a sense,” said Jackson. “The move to Paradise Valley marks a new chapter for Real Times Media and the Michigan Chronicle. Even today, the area harkens back to its roots as a bustling African American business and entertainment mecca and it’s exactly where our company need to be.”