From Chief Pontiac to the Pontiac car brand, the eponymous city was vital to Woodward Avenue’s history. A tribute sculpture is soon to commemorate that role.
Ground was broken Wednesday for the Pontiac Tribute, the second along Woodward, to help raise awareness about the history behind Michigan’s Main Street and its importance to not only the state but the U.S. and the world. The sculptures are robust columns a story or two tall that depict part of Woodward’s history. Ferndale’s was installed in 2008.
The structures “tell the story of that community’s contribution to Woodward,” says Nicole Brown, the outreach and promotions coordinator for the Woodward Avenue Action Association, which is spearheading the project. “The one for Pontiac tells the story of Pontiac’s rich automotive history — its heritage in terms of transportation. It’s acknowledging the past and what that area contributed to Woodward, and the world.”
Pontiac’s Tribute will be at the corner of Woodward and Whitmore, in the area commonly known as the “teardrop.” Ground is expected to be broken for the Detroit Tribute later this year. The ultimate goal is to have one for each city along Woodward to recognize each of their unique contributions.
“We’re really excited about the project,” Brown says. “It’s something the community can rally around. It’s something that acknowledges what a great city Pontiac was, is, and will be into the future.”
The Pontiac Tribute’s $150,000 price tag will be funded in part by the Federal Highway Administration National Scenic Byways funds and other contributors. The monument is expected to be completed by mid-summer.
Source: Nicole Brown, outreach and promotions coordinator for the Woodward Avenue Action Association
Writer: Kristin Lukowski