The irony is that if the North American International Auto Show would have remained in the bitter cold of January in Detroit, it would have still happened. As the title says, today brings the grim news that much of the industry worried about in the weeks leading up to the moment. The 2020 Detroit Auto Show is officially canceled, as TCF Center, formally Cobo Hall, will be repurposed as an infirmary to treat patients as the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to continue freeze the world in place.
The 2020 Detroit Auto Show was scheduled for June 7-20 at TCF Center and at nearby outside venues such as Hart Plaza, which . The show had traditionally been held in January, but was moved to the summer to be more consumer-focused as automakers dropped out and held more individual events to showcase their vehicles. The Detroit District of the US Army Corps was evaluating at least 15 sites, and is working under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to establish them, but at the direction of the state to assess a list of infirmaries that the office of Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer prepared. President Trump approved federal disaster relief funding for Michigan. Similarly, the Javits Convention Center in New York City – which hosts the New York International Auto Show – has been repurposed as an infirmary for the massive spike of coronavirus patients. The State of New York alone accounts for nearly half of America’s 120,000-plus confirmed cases as of Saturday, March 28. Michigan is the fourth highest state with COVID-19 confirmations, with 4,650 infections and 111 deaths.
The show’s cancelation comes from an internal memo sent to sponsors, obtained by Automotive News.
“The health and welfare of the citizens of Detroit and Michigan is paramount,” Rod Alberts, executive director of the show, said in the memo. “TCF Center is the ideal location for this important function at this critical and unprecedented time.”