Historic Detroit

Belle Isle Police Station

The Belle Isle Police Station was designed by the firm Mason & Rice and opened in early 1893, making it the second-oldest building on the island, behind the White House.

This cop shop on Inselruhe Avenue and Riverbank Drive also housed the harbormaster and was the island’s hospital. During the 1920s, the building served a key role in police efforts to crack down on rumrunners trying to sneak booze in from Canada across the Detroit River.

In 1928, for the first time anywhere, police radio operators broadcast on a dedicated frequency from here, revolutionizing the way officers are dispatched. The building is slated to become a welcome center.

More on this building coming soon.