Philip A. Hart Plaza in downtown Detroit, is a city plaza along the Detroit River. It is located more or less on the site at which Antoine Laumet de La Mothe, sieur de Cadillac landed in 1701 when he founded Fort Pontchartrain du Détroit, the settlement that became Detroit. In 2011, the Detroit-Wayne County Port Authority opened its new cruise ship passenger terminal and dock at Hart Plaza, adjacent to the Renaissance Center, which receives major cruise ships such as the MS Hamburg and the Yorktown.The 14acre plaza, which is named for the late U.S. Senator Philip Hart, opened in 1975 and has a capacity for about 40,000 people. At the center of the plaza is the Horace E. Dodge and Son Memorial Fountain, designed by Isamu Noguchi and Walter Budd in 1978.HistoryThe area where Hart Plaza stands today is believed to be where Antoine Laumet de La Mothe, sieur de Cadillac landed in 1701. The waterfront area became the main source of communication and transportation to the outside world until the inventions of the railroad and telegraph. By the mid 19th century this area was covered by docks, warehouses, and other industry, as was most of Detroit's waterfront of the time.It wasn't until 1890 that Hazen S. Pingree, Detroit's mayor at that time, suggested the location would be ideal for the creation of a waterfront center for city functions. However, the project was not carried through.Put Hart Plaza on your schedule, and learn what else deserves a visit by using our Detroit trip planner.
Tours To Hart Plaza
Art & Architecture - Downtown Walking Tour BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $20
Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
Wacky Walk Adventure Game - Detroit, MI BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $10
Duration: 2 hours
Hart Plaza Reviews
This is a good example of the negative consequences of taking out green space in a city and replacing it with cement. No one wants to congregate there! Nice view of the river and Canada, but that's.... more »
Monument to the working class the floor of the arch has been inscripted with quotes from labour leaders. With view towards the skyscrapers of downtown and across the river to Windsor, ON, the plaza... more »
Hart Plaza for Jazz Fest 2019! Enjoyed our time at the Jazz Fest this year. Spent time at HP watching performances, getting food, and hanging out. Safe, clean, friendly atmosphere with plenty of food and drink vendors. The downside being not enough seating for people looking to buy food from one of the food trucks and actually sit somewhere to eat it. I've been coming to Hart plaza for many years and would not hesitate to come down as a family during the day or in the evening with adults. Lots of parking close by and large police presence.
Great place for families to have a great time. The summer festivals is something you don’t want to miss out on. Food and entertainment line up is like icing on a cake definitely something to talk about.
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