Cardinal Health Distribution Center Opens in Detroit

June 10, 2015

Cardinal Health Distribution Center Opens in Detroit, Building on City’s Economic Renewal

Editor’s Note: Media can download video b-roll and photographs

DETROIT – The official opening today of the $30 million Cardinal Health Distribution Center marks a key development in the city of Detroit’s revitalization, providing an economic anchor in an area near Midtown poised for future economic renewal.

Situated on 18 acres of property on Rosa Parks Boulevard just north of I-94, the distribution center is a sprawling commercial enterprise that enhances a neighborhood that not too long ago resembled withering, desolate fields and crumbling industrial structures. It is a juxtaposition of old and new Detroit and symbolizes optimism for what could come next.

At a media briefing announcing the opening, Cardinal Health was joined by representatives from health care institutions Henry Ford Health System and Detroit Medical Center, KIRCO, the Troy-based real estate development, investment and construction company that built the distribution center, and city of Detroit. Local and regional community partners also attended, symbolic of the announcement’s significance as well as other local health systems served by Cardinal Health.

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan congratulated “Cardinal Health and everybody associated with this great project. It’s a good example of what happens when Henry Ford and the DMC work together. We’re excited to have this beautiful building and these jobs in the city of Detroit.”

The state-of-the-art distribution center is designed to meet the growing health care needs of the local community and will allow for future growth, service expansion and support in an ever-changing health care landscape.

A multi-year project, the distribution center’s opening comes nearly one year after construction began. It is 275,000 square feet with interior features that honor Detroit’s industrial past and celebrate the future. Some accent walls are surfaced with boards and railroad ties preserved from the original site while others are painted in vibrant Cardinal Health brand colors. The facility houses about 100 employees, many of whom relocated from Cardinal Health’s previous location in Romulus near Detroit Metro Airport.

“We know that thriving, local health systems are vital to the health of a community,” says Steve Inacker, president of Hospital Sales and Services at Cardinal Health. “Our collaboration with Detroit Medical Center and Henry Ford Health System enables us not only to support revitalization efforts in the city but also to drive supply chain efficiencies for our customers across Michigan, northern Ohio and northern Indiana so that all these systems can continue to focus on delivering accessible, responsive and personalized care to their patients.”

Henry Ford was instrumental in the development, having acquired the 18 acres of property and performed crucial pre-planning work such as environmental testing and obtaining proper zoning approvals and development incentives. In March 2014, Henry Ford sold the property to KIRCO, which has a long-term tenant lease arrangement with Cardinal Health.

In 2012, Henry Ford announced its vision for a $500 million expansion of its Henry Ford Hospital campus in Detroit. That vision, eyed for the next 10-15 years, includes green space and commercial, retail and housing development. CEO Nancy Schlichting says the Cardinal Health project was always seen as a catalyst for the expansion of its flagship hospital to be south of West Grand Boulevard and north of I-94.

“With all the work going on downtown, the M-1 rail project and now the Cardinal Health development, we’re thrilled to be part of the city of Detroit’s economic renewal,” Schlichting says. “With more than 100 years in Detroit, Henry Ford Health System has always believed in investing in the community beyond providing health care. We anticipate this development could lead to further revitalization in the city.”

DMC’s more than 20-year partnership with Cardinal Health was also key to the company’s relocation to Detroit. As part of the development, DMC and Henry Ford have long-term distribution agreements with Cardinal Health.

"We welcome Cardinal Health to the Rosa Parks Boulevard development. The new distribution center offers even greater reliability and access to essential medical supplies and pharmaceuticals used at the DMC and Henry Ford Health System," said Joe Mullany, CEO of the Detroit Medical Center. "Revitalization of this property opens up a host of growth possibilities and breathes new life into what was once a desolate landscape."

At the time the Cardinal Health property was acquired, it was in a state of significant decay. Formerly the site of a steel manufacturing facility, the property provided construction crews with its share of demolition and remediation challenges, says Alan Kiriluk, founder and president of KIRCO, the project developer. Crews uncovered buried petroleum storage tanks, old railroad tracks, deteriorated housing and contaminated soil. Nearby neighborhoods also felt the impact of the surroundings.

Today, the site sparkles with a new distribution center and lush landscaping.

“It is rewarding to have played a major role in a project that represents 140 jobs and a $30 million investment in this Detroit neighborhood,” Kiriluk says. “We are appreciative of the support, both financial and otherwise, that this project received from several community organizations, without which this project would not have been a success. This journey and the community support proves to the investment community that redevelopment can occur in the city of Detroit.”

From its new location, Cardinal Health will serve surrounding areas in Michigan as well as northern Ohio and northern Indiana.

About Cardinal Health

Headquartered in Dublin, Ohio, Cardinal Health, Inc. (NYSE: CAH) is a $91 billion health care services company that improves the cost-effectiveness of health care. As the business behind health care, Cardinal Health helps pharmacies, hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers, clinical laboratories and physician offices focus on patient care while reducing costs, enhancing efficiency and improving quality. Cardinal Health is an essential link in the health care supply chain, providing pharmaceuticals and medical products and services to more than 100,000 locations each day and is also the industry-leading direct-to-home medical supplies distributor. The company is a leading manufacturer of medical and surgical products, including gloves, surgical apparel and fluid management products. In addition, the company operates the nation's largest network of radiopharmacies that dispense products to aid in the early diagnosis and treatment of disease. Ranked #26 on the Fortune 500, Cardinal Health employs 34,000 people worldwide. More information about the company may be found at and @CardinalHealth on Twitter.

About Detroit Medical Center

The Detroit Medical Center operates nine hospitals and institutes, including Children’s Hospital of Michigan, Detroit Receiving Hospital, Harper University Hospital, Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital, Hutzel Women’s Hospital, Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan, Sinai-Grace Hospital, DMC Surgery Hospital, and DMC Heart Hospital. The Detroit Medical Center is a leading regional health care system with a mission of excellence in clinical care, research and medical education. The Detroit Medical Center is proud to be the Official Healthcare Services Provider of the Detroit Tigers, Detroit Red Wings and Detroit Pistons.

About Henry Ford Health System

Henry Ford Health System, one of the largest and most comprehensive integrated U.S. health care systems, is a national leader in clinical care, research and education. The system includes the 1,200-member Henry Ford Medical Group, five hospitals, Health Alliance Plan (a health insurance and wellness company), Henry Ford Physician Network, a 150-site ambulatory network and many other health-related entities throughout southeast Michigan, providing a full continuum of care. In 2014, Henry Ford provided $317 million in uncompensated care. The health system also is a major economic driver in Michigan and employs more than 23,000 employees. Henry Ford is a 2011 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient. The health system is led by CEO Nancy Schlichting. To learn more, visit


KIRCO is a third generation, family-owned commercial real estate organization headquartered in Troy, Mich. A real estate development, investment and construction company, KIRCO is focused on helping corporate clients in manufacturing, distribution, service related and healthcare sectors leverage real estate strategies and underutilized real estate assets to grow market share, build their brand and improve their business results. With offices in Ohio and North Carolina, as well as projects and properties across the country, KIRCO provides a unique array of consultative solutions across a variety of property types and locations.


David Olejarz, Henry Ford Health System, [email protected]

Corey Kerr, Cardinal Health, [email protected]

Elizabeth Dryden, Detroit Medical Center, [email protected]

Katie Moore, KIRCO, [email protected]