In 1997, the city of Detroit changed the zoning around the historic Ford plant. Detroit preservationist Jerald Mitchell suspected that bulldozers might not be far behind, so he got the Henry Ford Heritage Association involved to examine how they might save the building.
Three years later, a group of historians, preservationists, and Model T enthusiasts incorporated the Model T Automotive Heritage Complex as a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization and purchased the building. When we first opened to the public as an historic site we were called the T-plex. Today, we operate as the Ford Piquette Avenue Plant.
We are dedicated to preserving the building and providing a unique experience of Detroit’s history. The plant now attracts visitors from around the world, bus tours, families, and scores of people attending public and private events from car shows to weddings.
We’re managed by a board of trustees and volunteer committees. In 2013, the board hired the site’s first executive director, Nancy Darga, former director of the MotorCities National Heritage Area.
The Ford Piquette Avenue Plant was declared a U.S. National Historic Landmark in 2006. It was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places in 2002 and listed as a Michigan State Historic Site in 2003.