Willow Run Bomber Plant

Johanna McCoy

The Bomber Restaurant was first opened in Ypsilanti in 1936 as the "Baldwin Diner," and its name was changed to the Bomber in the 1940's as it served many transient workers who were living in town making B- 24 bombers at the Willow Run Plant.  Johanna McCoy bought the restaurant over 25 years ago and has struggled to keep the doors open recently due to the pandemic.  Currently closed, she talks to WEMU's Lisa Barry about her determination to win the war over COVID-19 and keep customers and the community connected through the Ypsilanti restaurant.

Sharon Graganta

Several thousand women are gathering Saturday, October 14th in Ypsilanti to try and set a new Guinness Book of World Record for the most Rosie The Riveters in one place since World War II.

The original Rosie the Riveter worked at the Willow Run Aircraft Factory, building B-24 bombers for the Air Force.  A new world record of the most Rosie the Riveters in one place is being attempted Eastern Michigan University’s Convocation Center this Saturday.

89.1’s Lisa Barry speaks with 94-year-old Georgia Labunes of Ann Arbor, one of the real-life Rosies attempting to break the record.

American Center for Mobility
American Center for Mobility / acmwillowrun.org

By the end of 2017, the American Center for Mobility facility in Ypsilanti Township is expected to be up and running.  It will serve as testing facility for autonomous vehicles.  And as the North American International Auto Show is underway in Detroit, several of its participants spoke about the future of the center.

Debbie Dingell

There was a groundbreaking ceremony Monday at the former Willow Run Bomber Plant in Ypsilanti Township which will soon be a center for driverless vehicle testing, the American Center for Mobility.

Among the elected officials on hand for the ceremony was 12th District Congresswoman Debbie Dingell.  She says the facility will be a great step forward for Michigan and the auto industry.

Jorge Avellan / 89.1 WEMU

'Rosie the Riveter' would be proud. The new location for the Yankee Air Museum is a step closer to opening to the public. The site? Rosie's stomping grounds at the historic, former, Willow Run Bomber plant. Jorge Avellan has the details. 

Bob Eccles

The effort to convert a section of the former Willow Run bomber plant into a new home for the Yankee Air Museum is moving forward.

Yankee Air Museum founder and Michigan Aerospace Foundation president Dennis Norton says a milestone was reached on Tuesday.

 A group working to save part of Rosie the Riveter's old factory says it has signed a purchase agreement for the property.

     The Yankee Air Museum announced yesterday it is moving forward with a deal to buy 144,000 square feet of the former Willow Run Bomber Plant.

     The museum says in a statement that, assuming an upcoming inspection goes well, it will close on the purchase "in a few weeks."

     The Save the Willow Run Bomber Plant campaign has raised millions of dollars in an effort to save part of the factory for use as the museum's new home.

Willow Run Bomber Plant
Bob Eccles / 89.1 WEMU

A leader of an effort to save a slice of Rosie the Riveter's old Michigan plant says his group soon will sign a purchase agreement for the property.

Christy Hoffman

  A group trying to save a portion of a Detroit-area assembly plant where Rosie the Riveter once worked is the proud owner of a new Guinness World Record. 

We should soon have a better idea of how the Yankee Air Museum is doing in its effort to raise enough money to buy part of the former Willow Run bomber plant for its new home. 

WEMU's Bob Eccles has more.

Library of Congress

The annual Ypsilanti Heritage Festival kicks-off on Friday and the celebration will run through the weekend.  It's a perfect time to take a look back at some of the elements that have helped create the identity of this Washtenaw County community.

Future Of Historic Bomber Plant Discussed

Jun 19, 2013

Later this week, bids to demolish most of the former Willow Run factory originally built to produce bombers during World War II will be opened.  As WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports, future environmental actions and redevelopment of the factory were the subject of a public meeting Tuesday night.


The Yankee Air Museum wants to buy part of the plant where B-24 bombers were built during World War II to use as its new home.

It'll cost six million dollars to buy the very end of the former Willow Run Powertrain plant where the bombers rolled out from 1942 to 1945.  That's according to Dennis Norton, President of the Michigan Aerospace Foundation - the sister organization and funding arm of the Yankee Air Museum.