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Thread: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

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    Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    Detroit looks at downsizing to save cityDETROIT | Detroit, the very symbol of American industrial might for most of the 20th century, is drawing up a radical renewal plan that calls for turning large swaths of this now-blighted, rusted-out city back into the fields and farmland that existed before the automobile.

    Operating on a scale never before attempted in this country, the city would demolish houses in some of the most desolate sections of Detroit and move residents into stronger neighborhoods. Roughly a quarter of the 139-square-mile city could go from urban to semi-rural.

    Near downtown, fruit trees and vegetable farms would replace neighborhoods that are an eerie landscape of empty buildings and vacant lots. Suburban commuters heading into the city center might pass through what looks like the countryside to get there. Surviving neighborhoods in the birthplace of the auto industry would become pockets in expanses of green.

    Detroit officials first raised the idea in the 1990s, when blight was spreading. Now, with the recession plunging the city deeper into ruin, a decision on how to move forward is approaching. Mayor Dave Bing, who took office last year, is expected to unveil some details in his state-of-the-city address this month.

    "Things that were unthinkable are now becoming thinkable," said James W. Hughes, dean of the School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University, who is among the urban experts watching the experiment with interest. "There is now a realization that past glories are never going to be recaptured. Some people probably don't accept that, but that is the reality."

    The meaning of what is afoot is now settling in across the city.

    "People are afraid," said Deborah L. Younger, executive director of a group called Detroit Local Initiatives Support Corporation that is working to revitalize five areas of the city. "When you read that neighborhoods may no longer exist, that sends fear."

    Though the will to downsize has arrived, the way to do it is not clear and fraught with problems.

    Politically explosive decisions must be made about which neighborhoods should be bulldozed and which improved. Hundreds of millions of federal dollars will be needed to buy land, raze buildings and relocate residents, since this financially desperate city does not have the means to do it on its own. It isn't known how many people in the mostly black, blue-collar city might be uprooted, but it could be thousands. Some won't go willingly.
    I'm all for downsizing a nest of Democrats. Why should my tax dollars be used to do it? They shouldn't be.

    Sell the land to private investors with the caveat that the buildings must be removed and some appropriate form of landscaping done if the new owner is not going to build on the property.

    That's it. Have an auction, be done with it. No federal dollars should go to any project such as this. If the land goes for a hundred bucks an acre, then it's worth $100, as the new tax base.

    Simple as that.

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    Re: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    Demolishing these rotted out neighborhood will do a lots to reduce crime.
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    Re: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    Quote Originally Posted by American View Post
    Demolishing these rotted out neighborhood will do a lots to reduce crime.
    Yep.

    Doesn't seem to be a matter for the federal government.

    If it's something Michigan wants, let Michigan pay for it.

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    Re: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    A block in Detroit:

    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

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    Re: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    A block in Detroit:

    Some of those homes have promise for restoration for a young family.
    I bet they could be gotten for a song.
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    Re: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    My reaction to the problems that have befallen Detroit is they brought it on themselves and now the whole State of California is fallowing them down the drain.

    I have never wanted to go to or even pass through Detroit. It has a long reputation for being ghetto with a down town area.

    Since 1950 people have been fleeing the City and I believe much of the Cities trouble comes from three major problems.

    One is the unions helped drive the Auto industry out.

    Two those in charge of the Auto industry failed to keep up with th Japanese manufacturers in terms of quality and versatility of their products in a changing market.

    Three when Detroit was offered federal funding for city's modernization they misspent the money and added to the problems by building Highways to use for escape rather than urban renewal where it was needed.

    Now they have no choice but to cut back which could end up being a good thing.

    I wish we had a leader in charge here in California who could see the light before it becomes the fire from a riot because of the utter stupidity of the idiot Schwarzenegger who does nothing about the problems.

    I hope he enjoys his Obama appointment. The low down RINO.

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    Re: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Guerrilla View Post
    Some of those homes have promise for restoration for a young family.
    I bet they could be gotten for a song.
    They can. You can buy a 4 bedroom home in Detroit for about 20 grand. And good homes too, not the ones shown in your picture.

    About that picture - It's nothing compared to how the west side looked after the 1967 riots. LOL.
    Last edited by danarhea; 03-09-10 at 11:20 PM.
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    Re: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    Quote Originally Posted by danarhea View Post
    They can. You can buy a 4 bedroom home in Detroit for about 20 grand. And good homes too, not the ones shown in your picture.

    About that picture - It's nothing compared to how the west side looked after the 1967 riots. LOL.
    Man, if only that were true where I am.

    I can find some really decent houses from 50k-70k but for 20k I could almost pay cash.
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    Re: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Guerrilla View Post
    Man, if only that were true where I am.

    I can find some really decent houses from 50k-70k but for 20k I could almost pay cash.
    Good luck finding work in Detroit though

    A real unemployment rate of around 40%.

    The burbs around Detroit are probably better for jobs
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    Re: Detroit looks at downsizing to save city

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Tammerlain View Post
    Good luck finding work in Detroit though

    A real unemployment rate of around 40%.

    The burbs around Detroit are probably better for jobs
    Yup, it's Great Depression there.
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