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Detroit Laundromat-Cafe The Commons Brings Community Together



Situated on Detroit’s east side on Mack Ave. and Beals Street sits The Commons. The laundromat, cafe, and community space was created due to a need in the 48214 community. MACC Development spoke to residents in the neighborhood to figure out what was needed after purchasing the building for $500 at the tax auction. The number one thing that came up for the community that’s north of the Detroit River was a laundromat and a place to gather.



“Starting closer to about three years ago, they put 1.5 million dollars into the building in renovations in order to have a business for the community, space for events, and then office space as well for their own programs,”explained Jesse Bandfield, The Common’s general manager.


“MACC Development does after school tutoring for kids, they run a sports program for kids, they have legal counseling, and now they’re getting back into housing as well.”


The Commons is not only just a place of business, it’s a place for community members to commune.



The Commons is not only just a place of business, it’s a place for community members to commune.


“They operate solely within the 48214 zip code and wanted this business storefront to be both that visible tangible way to connect with the non-profit and to be able to serve the community,” Bandfield said.


Jesse Banfield, General Manager of The Commons

“The church from the beginning has done a lot of door to door work to see what was needed,” he continued.


The cafe is an integral part of the laundromat and community space. The Commons wanted to be intentional about the menu and the way that they serve the community.


"Our menu has two objectives. One is to be accessible, so serving quality and fresh foods, but also be able to be at a decent price point and reach the neighborhood around us."


“Our menu has two objectives. One is to be accessible, so serving quality and fresh foods, but also be able to be at a decent price point and reach the neighborhood around us, so what we’ve been able to do is partner with a lot of very local food producers,” shared Bandfield.


They work with other small businesses like Fresh Corner Cafe, Greenhouse Soups and Chilli, Sweet Potato Sensations, and Avalon Bakery.


“We found a lot of our vendors through Food Lab, Bandfield explained. “So they’ve been really wonderful.”




Embarking upon their one-year anniversary, The Commons has now added “drop-off” service to the laundromat, so community members can come into the space, drop off their laundry, and pick it back up clean, fresh, and folded within 24 hours.


The Commons also decided to launch a new line of breakfast sandwiches, salads, and lunch sandwiches.



“We have three types of sandwiches right now. They’re all being made by Greenhouse Soups Stands,” Bandfield said. “Roast beef and cheddar, ham and provolone, and turkey and swiss.”


As of Friday, Mar. 8, The Commons will be officially celebrating one year of being in business. They’ll be celebrating with a Mainstreet Mob event that takes place on Sunday, Mar. 10 from 3-5 p.m.



The Commons Detroit team

The fete will feature a myriad of local business owners and their products. Members of Mainstreet Mob can also earn prizes and perks for participating.

Bandfield said, “it’ll be a good time to allow people to gather, mix, and hang out.”


Written by Glennisha Morgan, Photography by David Lewinski

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