Victoria Manor Apartments – Randolph & University

This large apartment building at the corner of University and Randolph has long been one of my favourite buildings in the city.

Built in 1924 the building is typical of the era. It was built by two Detroit businessmen, Walter A. Dousseau and Thomas W. Murray. They operated several similar building throughout Detroit.

The building when built contained 36 apartments, each with “four rooms and a bath”.

According to newspaper reports at the time, each apartment consisted of a living room with a wall bed, a dining room, bedroom and kitchen as well as a “well fitted bathroom”. One of the key features were the electric ranges and the “electric iceless refrigerator” in each unit.

A rendering of the building from while it was under construction. The architect is unknown, although I suspect it may be Albert Lothian. In his list of works is a 36 unit apartment building listed as being on Victoria Avenue. I suspect it may have been the Victoria Manor apartments, since it was/is also a 36 unit building. Just a gut feeling that they might be the same building. 1924 would have been earlier in Lothian’s career, which could also explain the more standard design compared to some of his later works.

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