Wixom, Michigan

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Wixom is a city in Oakland County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 13,263 at the 2000 census. The city was home to the former Wixom Assembly Plant, which produced the Lincoln LS, the Ford Thunderbird, the Ford GT, and the Lincoln Town Car. The plant closed its doors on May 31, 2007.

Wixom is home to several production and manufacturing businesses, including Trijicon, a leading manufacturer of night gun sights and night telescopic sights; Discraft, a leading manufacturer of flying discs for disc sports games like Ultimate; the U.S. headquarters of spark plug manufacturer NGK, and MAC Valves, Inc. [3], a manufacturer of pneumatic valves used in the automotive and packaging industries.

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History

The settlement of Wixom dates back to the 1830s. The establishment of Wixom as a place started in the early 1870s when the Holly, Wayne and Monroe Railroad was constructed through the area. Willard Wixom platted land on either side of the railroad near the Novi and Commerce Township border. The construction of a railroad depot and the naming of the area as Wixom fixed Wixom as a destination.

The village of Wixom was incorporated in the 1950s following the announcement of plans to construct the Wixom Assembly Plant in Novi Township. Prior to that time, Wixom was an unincorporated place. The village borders included portions of both Novi and Commerce Townships. Efforts by the remainder of Novi Township to incorporate as a village prompted the newly established village of Wixom to incorporate as a city. The city largely follows the borders of the village although a small area of parkland on the north side of the City was annexed from Commerce Township in the 1970s.

On November 13, 1996, Gerald Atkins "shot his way" (according to eyewitness reports) into the Wixom Ford plant with an AK-47 semi-automatic rifle, eventually killing plant manufacturing manager Darrell Izzard (aged 57) in a hallway; the shooter wounded three others. Fleeing the plant, Atkins hid in storm drain tunnels while law enforcement surrounded the plant and trained their weapons from as far away as the Interstate 96 freeway. Hours later he surrendered.

Downtown development

The downtown area of the city is being developed with a new main street area on Pontiac Trail by the city offices called the Wixom Village Center. The Village Center includes a pedestrian plaza, restaurants, and service shops. The residential development called Tribute of Wixom will contain 600 units that include ranch-style condos, town houses, and single-family homes. The $200 million project was expected to be completed in six years.

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