It seems like they've been working on that land for the last 10 years.
I read in LSJ that a group is renovating the former Metro Arena. I had no idea it was still standing. Sexton had a hockey "club" over there for a couple of years in the '70s. My buddies from Quentin Park [where we learned to skate] were on the team. It was like a warehouse inside just like the City Market!
Here's the link to remember to include: https://www.lansingstatejournal.com/story/entertainment/2019/06/11/lansing-city-futsal-delta-township-arena/1333023001/
It's weird, because I'm pretty sure I know where this is - I used to go to play laser tag in a building on the northside of the plaza, I think - but I don't remember a facility this large, there. Looking at aerials, though, it's clearly the east building in the plaza.
That whole area is a testament to failed 60's-era planning. There is too much parking, and it's set too far back. The whole parking lot fronting Elmwood could be taken out and the plaza operate none the worse for it. Though I guess if futsal takes off, there, the over-abundance of parking will make sense.
Man, it's crazy. I live in DT for 10 years from 1998-2008 and never knew that building was anything other than a regular strip mall. But from the aerials you're right, it's huge.
It was never much of an attraction. Basically, it was a metal sided pole barn/warehouse with bench seating. Being used to the Civic Center and Munn the building felt cheap and unattractive, it did not have the facade back then. Even at the height of the mall's popularity when it was all happening out there on W. Saginaw the building seemed hidden and out back. It would be great if they make it over there.