Northville State Hospital
|Northville State Hospital|
|Building Style||Cottage Plan|
|Peak Patient Population||2,200 in 1964|
Consisting of 20 buildings spread out over 453 of wooded, sometimes swampy land, Northville State Hospital was lauded as one of the best psychiatric facilities in the country when it opened. The first patients moved into the main building on January 1, 1952. and Dr. Philip Brown was selected as the first superintendent. One of the buildings on its campus later housed the Northville Residential Training Center, a separate institution. Not long after, the state was considering the small wooded piece of land between this institution and Hawthorne Center to place the Maxey Boys Training School, but the plan was rejected, and Maxey was built in Whitmore Lake.
The hospital was almost completely self-sufficient with its own laundry, kitchen, gymnasium, movie theater, swimming pool, and bowling alley, powered by a steam plant that supplied electricity and heat through a network of underground tunnels. In the 1970s, the state began to trim the mental health budget, closing some hospitals and reducing programs offered as doctors began relying on medicine and drugs to treat symptoms. Crowding became an issue at Northville, as the facility was regularly treating over 1,000 patients, but had only been designed for 650. Some patients had to sleep in the gymnasium until more rooms could be arranged.
In May 2003, the remaining 239 patients were transferred to other state facilities. The last patient left on May 16th, 2003, after which a skeleton staff began winding down operations. Detroit-based Adamo Group demolition company began what was expected to be a four-month demolition process in April, 2018 & was completed early 2019.
Main Image Gallery: Northville State Hospital