City Transformation, News

Your Detroit Weekly Reading List: Doing The Work

Detroit is a city of questions. What’s next for Detroit? Who should be involved in turning around Detroit? What is Detroit going to do about the financial situation, let alone the plight of many of the people?

Joe Louis Fist Skyline Downtown Detroit Nick Hagen

A meme caught fire online this week that satirizes those coming to Detroit with a mindset that they’re arriving to save the place. Frankly, Detroit doesn’t need fancy synergistic cross-platform buzzwords, what it needs is people (new, old, anywhere in between) to do the work as part of the community. If enough people come together to do the work, and just as important, the resources are put behind the projects that show results, we save ourselves.

Our picture of the week is a small part of a photo essay we’re working on to highlight what impact M1-Rail will have. After construction starts this year, Woodward won’t look the same and we wanted to document that change. Oh, and here’s more information if you want to know more about the real history of the Joe Louis Fist.

So here’s your 10 links from around the web about Detroit that make your weekly reading list. Enjoy!

Mobile clinic looks out for Detroit’s homeless

National Public Radio: A new program in Detroit is targeting chronically homeless people who do not seek out medical help. A mobile medical team visits the homeless on their turf and aggressively follows up with these patients to help get them the medicine and care they need.

How a young community of entrepreneurs are rebuilding Detroit

Fast Company: “I tell people, if you are not needed where you are right now, you are needed in Detroit. But before you show up, you need to know that it ain’t Disneyland for hipsters.” Those were the words of Josh McManus of Little Things Labs. This article takes a tough look at Detroit’s challenges, and some of the people trying to make a difference.

Michiganders: Give us more diverse transportation

CBS Detroit: Michiganders want state leaders to diversify the state’s transportation system with more options, from high-speed trains to more walkable communities. That was the consensus of an analysis of 18 community forums held across the state throughout 2012, by Transportation for Michigan (Trans4M).

Do I stay or do I go? 

Michigan Environmental Council: Living in a Detroit neighborhood devastated by vacant lots and abandoned eyesores, my chief dilemma is the same one shared by my neighbors: Do I leave the city I love, or do I stay? That question remains to be answered, but a dynamic new set of Detroit Future City recommendations has given us hope that—if we stay—there is a real and tangible prospect of re-inventing a stronger, safer and more vibrant Detroit.

A Missionary’s Quest to Remake Motor City

New York Times: Gilbert’s plans, according to academics like Brent D. Ryan, author of “Design After Decline: How America Rebuilds Shrinking Cities,” amount to one of the most ambitious privately financed urban reclamation projects in American history. Opportunity Detroit, as Mr. Gilbert has branded it, is both a rescue mission and a business venture that, if successful, will yield him a fortune.

Motown’s female singers finally get their due at the museum 

Huffington Post: More than 40 years have passed since the recording of Marvin Gaye’s “Save the Children,” but a replay of the song in the studio where it was recorded compressed time and brought tears to the eyes of Louvain Demps. For Demps and her fellow Andantes, Jackie Hicks and Marlene Barrow-Tate, moments like these have been private, since the wider world knew only their voices, not their faces. But now in their 70s, the unsung backing group who sang on thousands of Motown songs is finally getting acclaim for its contributions to the groundbreaking, chart-topping music made in Detroit in the 1960s and early 1970s before the label moved to Los Angeles.

Garden Fresh Gourmet will provide 1 million meals to hungry people in Metro Detroit

Ferndale Patch: America’s #1 fresh salsa and America’s largest and most efficient food rescue organization are teaming up to offer Metro Detroit schools, churches, organizations and civic groups a new fun, healthy and profitable group fundraising program. Garden Fresh Gourmet and Forgotten Harvest will hold an open house on Thursday, April 18, at Garden Fresh’s Ferndale headquarters to introduce local school and community group leaders to the new “Forgotten Harvest Fundraising Heroes-Sponsored by Garden Fresh Gourmet” program which will be launching for the 2013-14 school year.

Steel hauler opens shipping season at Detroit port

Detroit Free Press: Port officials will celebrate the arrival of a steel-hauling vessel from the United Kingdom as the first international ship to deliver cargo this year to Detroit. The bulk carrier Federal Mattawa arrived April 10 and was unloading cargo at the Nicholson Terminal & Dock Co. in southwest Detroit. The ship carries steel for Tata Steel and departed from the northern English port of Teesport.

Food innovation districts are a powerful economic gardening tool

MSU Extension News: Food innovation districts provide a way of improving a community’s food infrastructure while creating a cooperative business environment for food-oriented businesses. Imagine a place in your community where food-oriented businesses were concentrated in close proximity; a place where business cooperation and collaboration were encouraged and nurtured. Then imagine that this was further supported by the planning and economic development functions of local and regional governments.

Cass Corridor welcomes new makerspace: Ocelot Print Shop

Curbed Detroit: The Cass Corridor (a.k.a. Lower Midtown, depending on who you ask) welcomes its newest makerspace: the Ocelot Print Shop. Ocelot is a for-profit printmakers collective which will offer printing courses, retail products, fill custom orders, and connect creatives with the tools and skills necessary to make their ideas tangible.

Joe Louis Fist Skyline Downtown Detroit Nick Hagen

Joe Louis Fist in Downtown Detroit. Photo by Nick Hagen.

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