When Upjohn moved out to
Portage in the 1940s they bought 1500 acres. Most of the parcels
of land they bought had a house on them. Rather than demolish
good houses, the company made them available for employees
to rent. The 1953 list below contains 19 houses (thank you Neil
Sikora). The end of rental housing came in the late 1980's when the EPA
gave the company pollution scores that were too high.
Demolishing all the rental houses lowered that score
then there were fewer people living close to the Portage
manufacturing buildings. Some of these houses were moved to
vacant property on Lovers Lane and in other plats.
Comments from Somebody who Lived in an Upjohn Rental
I lived in a rental from about 1983 to 1987. There was a waiting list for the rental homes. I was on the
waiting list for a couple of years. The address of my house was
7734 Portage Road. I think my rent was about
$135/month which was very cheap for that time. Upjohn would
reimburse funds used to improve the property so I installed a
new bathroom vanity, painted, ripped up carpet and other things.
In 1987 they told me to move immediately and then demolished the house I was renting because there were
issues with the well. They had been checking the well for a few
months before that, taking samples. They paid to move me to another Upjohn rental
that I needed until I bought my first house a few months later.