May 3, 2023 - Sports

What we know about next year's NFL Draft in Detroit

Lions fans celebrate the first round pick in last week's 2023 NFL Draft in Kansas City. David Eulitt/Getty

Lions fans celebrate the first-round pick in last week's 2023 NFL Draft in Kansas City. Photo: David Eulitt/Getty

Detroit is officially on the clock.

Why it matters: The 2024 NFL Draft could bring hundreds of thousands of people to Detroit, but officials still haven't decided where to hold the event.

State of play: The draft is one of the league's premiere events. Fans from across the country flock to the host city to party and witness the next wave of potential superstars.

Between the lines: The Kansas City setup at its historic Union Station accentuated the city's character and gave us some clues into what Detroit locations might make sense.

So we came up with a few sites that could be ideal for the 2024 NFL Draft:

Hart Plaza, with a total capacity of 40,000, would provide a beautiful view from above the Detroit River. But for attendees on the ground, it's not the most up-to-date site.

  • Several areas inside the plaza are in poor condition and need rehabilitation.

Campus Martius, the 2.5-acre park and de facto city center, hosted the NFL's draft announcement party last summer. It's the home of Detroit's annual tree lighting ceremony, the restaurant Parc and an outdoor bar.

  • The Detroit News' Karen Dumas reported Monday that Campus Martius and Hart Plaza will be the event's designated sites.
  • But "the exact footprint has not been established yet, so we cannot confirm any details," city spokesperson John Roach tells Axios.

Michigan Central Station would be the most interesting choice. Local leaders have been touting the reconstruction of the once-abandoned train station into a modern mobility innovation center as part of the city's rebirth.

  • The site makes sense considering Ford's connection to both the renovation project and the Lions.
  • With renovations expected to be completed before the end of the year, could the draft be its first major event?

What we're watching: How far leaders are willing to go to help make Detroit attractive for national fans will impact our area long after they go home.

  • How much of its own money will the city put up for an event that Mayor Mike Duggan says will generate over $100 million of economic impact?

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Detroit.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Detroit stories

No stories could be found


Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Detroit.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more