An ill-prepared Texas doctor and a shady Illinois businessman will not own the Packard Plant. A Peru-via-Spain developer with proven experience could own it by Monday, possibly ending yet another long, local nightmare here in Detroit.
Fernanda Palazuelo, who has actually visited the Packard Plant and talked with the Detroit Free Press earlier about his plan, sounds like the guy who can pull off not just buying the damn thing, but doing something with it. When the third-place bidder spoke to the Freep last month:
Unlike most local developers, the 58-year-old Spaniard believes he can preserve and rehab sizable portions of the original structures — despite decades of decay, arson and metal theft. He envisions transforming the roughly 40-acre site into a residential, commercial and industrial hub.
"It has the size, it has the charisma and it has the history," Palazuelo told the Free Press during an hour-long interview Thursday in the lobby of a Midtown hotel.
Palazuelo says he will pay Wayne County, which owns the site, $405,000 on Monday. He gets it at a discount because Bill Hults, the second-place bidder who was paying Wayne County with change from the leave-a-penny take-a-penny wells at gas stations, failed to make another deadline to pay in full. Hults' bid has been canceled and he is now out $200,000.
If Palazuelo fails to complete the sale, the Packard Plant returns to auction. Please someone buy it so I don't have to write another post about this eternal property auction from hell again.