A job posting on Microsoft’s Careers page lists a position open for “Store Manager” in Detroit, Michigan. This is interesting because while many new restaurants and bars have opened, there’s been a dearth of new higher-end retail shops in the city for the last several years—especially downtown. According to the Detroit Free Press, Moosejaw is the only “significant” new retailer to open downtown since CVS in 2006.
The job posting claims the location is Detroit, Michigan. Sometimes, this means metro Detroit, but I think in the case of Microsoft Careers, they actually mean Detroit—they list other Michigan cities specifically (such as Southfield, as shown in this job search). It’s reasonably safe to assume that a retail store opening in Troy (say, at Somerset Collection) would say Troy, MI. Furthermore, a listing of other Microsoft retail stores around the country shows that in other large metropolitan areas, such as Los Angeles, the individual cities are indeed shown on the listings.
A Microsoft Store downtown would be an interesting new anchor location; something other than fashion or Detroit tourist goods would be a valuable addition to our recovering downtown district. A lot of downtown retail is designed around tourists or visitors, but a store like this is something locals and downtown workers would visit.
Why not? Detroit has a burgeoning tech scene. Tech and IT startups are popping up all over the place, and the developers, entrepreneurs, engineers, and others who are coming downtown to work or live are all going to be interested in a store like this. Microsoft has a lot of new technology to show off, from Windows 8 to whatever the next Xbox is (most likely to be announced at E3 2013 in June), to Surface tablets, and a hot young tech culture like Detroit is a perfect place for that kind of outreach.
It will be interesting to see where, exactly, this store pops up, but it’s not unreasonable to think it will be on Woodward, especially with the proximity to the M@dison and the upcoming M1 light rail line.