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Revamped City Planning Aims at Neighborhood Revivals

Maurice Cox is the director of the City of Detroit Planning and Development Department (Eric Seals / Detroit Free Press)
Under Detroit’s new Director of Planning, Maurice Cox, the city’s planning efforts now focus not on the already revitalizing downtown but in places where city planners for decades have paid little if any attention — Detroit’s hard-hit neighborhoods. Read more... Read more

‘Agrihood’ Project Focuses on Farm-to-Table in Detroit

Officials at the Michigan Urban Farming Initiative unveiled a partnership  that will help transform this long-vacant apartment building into a community center and cafe to anchor its growing agricultural campus (Todd McInturf / The Detroit News)
Detroit officials announced a partnership that will help transform a long-vacant apartment building into a community center and cafe to anchor its growing agricultural campus. The project is being touted as the nation’s first urban “agrihood,” an alternative neighborhood that’s built around the farm-to-table model featured mainly in rural and suburban settings. Read more... Read more

Turning Detroit’s Abandoned Homes Into Greenhouses

(Laura McDermott / The Atlantic)
Two years after Detroit emerged from bankruptcy, its urban-farming scene is flourishing, with some 1,400 farms and community gardens spread across the city’s 139 square miles. Many local growers worry that they will be uprooted as the city woos development projects, and with them, much-needed taxes and jobs. But green spaces don’t have to be at odds with revitalization, says Maurice Cox, the city’s director of planning and development, who notes that farms and gardens are a key element of... Read more

Webinar: Strategic Partnerships in Detroit to Create Stronger Connections between Youth and the Trades

Credit: FastCoExist
Long-term investments are sorely needed to connect youth to the trades – and to change the general public’s perception of the trades – but we can’t lose sight of the partnerships already taking place. The Urban Manufacturing Alliance’s Workforce Community of Practice will feature two organizations’ creative partnerships to bringing youth into the trades. Both examples of partnerships demonstrate intentional inclusion of underserved communities and the benefit manufacturing jobs can bring to them and their communities. Register now... Read more

Detroit’s Downtown Rebounds, but Neighborhoods Lag Behind

A vacant house in Detroit's Brush Park neighborhood (Rebecca Cook / Reuters)
While downtown and Midtown are on the rise, several other neighborhoods have yet to bounce back from population loss, disinvestment and scores of foreclosures. The under-construction Little Caesars Arena, which house the Detroit Pistons and the Red Wings, is the centerpiece of a coming 50-block entertainment district in a part of downtown that’s already nearly at capacity with new residents and new businesses. But some say the city is missing the kind of targeted spending that could reduce the number... Read more

Design in Detroit: The Art of Building Rehab

The revitalized College for Creative Studies in Detroit, Michigan
Had the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, Mich. built its new school from scratch, there’s a good chance students would be toiling away in isolated classrooms right now. They surely wouldn’t be an elevator ride from a startup incubator, or steps from an arched auditorium that draws international luminaries to events. But the school didn’t build new. It accepted a neglected building donated by General Motors: the historic Argonaut, a 760,000-square-foot research center originally built in 1928. Read more... Read more

Four Cities Chosen for $40 Million Investment in Public Spaces

Memphis, Tennessee (Credit: Route Fifty)
Can investment in parks, libraries and recreation centers help reverse the worrisome trend of economic and social segregation in cities? Four national foundations are betting big on that theory. Starting today The JPB Foundation, Knight Foundation, The Kresge Foundation and The Rockefeller Foundation are coming together to invest a total of $20 million in public spaces in four cities: Akron, Chicago, Detroit and Memphis. That money will be combined with $20 million in matched funding from local sources, resulting in... Read more
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