While working on an upcoming web-page for my Detroit Transit History website, which will focus on the history of the former DSR Bassett bus route, I ran across something unusual which aroused my curiosity.
I first noticed on old DSR timetable cards from the mid-1950's that the Bassett bus line was routed off of Bassett St. to Ethel for about 3 blocks (btw Visger and Miami) and then routed back along Bassett. I didn't think too much of it at first until something told me to pull up an aerial photo of that area. To my surprise I noticed that Bassett street appeared to be closed down for three blocks and traffic routed around what looked like some type of military compound (???) which seemed to stretch into River Rouge to the south. I used the military compound (or barracks) description of the area because of the unusual arrangement of the buildings in that section compared to the housing in the surrounding area.
This street closure appears on DTE aerial collection photos from 1949, 1952 and 1956, but not in 1961. The closest street map I have prior (1937) shows no closure of Bassett. According to DSR route information, in October of 1957 the bus route was through routed back onto Bassett, but I could find no mention as to why. I've included a 1952 aerial photo showing the street routing around Bassett.
Anyone have a clue what this area might have been used for?