Michigan State political scientist Laura Reese and Wayne State urban affairs expert Gary Sands have written an essay “Detroit’s recovery: The glass is half-full at best,” for Conversation, which was reprinted at CityLab as “Is Detroit Really Making a Comeback?” The article is based on a longer academic treatment of this subject by Reese, Sanders and co-authors, entitled “It’s safe to come, we’ve got lattes,” in the journal Cities. (This is one of those rare cases where the mass media version of an article is more measured and less snarky than the title of the companion academic piece, but I digress.)
Reese and Sands set about the apparently obligatory task of offering a contrarian view to stories in the popular press suggesting that Detroit has somehow turned the corner on its economic troubles and is starting to come back. We, too, are wary of glib claims that everything is fine in Detroit. It isn’t. The city still bears the deep scars of decades of industrial decline coupled with dramatic failure of urban governance. The nascent rebound is evident only in a few places.
There’s a kind of straw man argument here. Is Detroit “back?” As best I can tell, no one’s making that argument. The likelihood that the city will restore the industrial heyday of the U.S. auto industry, replete with a profitable oligopoly and powerful unions that negotiate high wages for modestly skilled work, just isn’t in the cards. As Ed Glaeser has pointed out, it’s rare that cities reinvent their economies. But when they do—as in the cases of Boston and New York—it’s because they’ve managed to do an extraordinary job of educating their local populations, and that base of talent has served as the critical resource for generating new economic activity. Detroit is still far from that point.
And there’s no one who should think a renaissance will happen quickly, if it happens at all. History is littered with examples of once flourishing cities that failed for centuries to find a second act: Athens was long deserted, Venice had its empire and economy collapse, Bruges had its harbor silt-up. In each case, these cities’ early economies lived hard, died young and left a beautiful (architectural) corpse. It’s really only been in the 20th century that each of these cities revived to any degree after their historical decline.
Well it’s bigger than Saskatoon is but it really comes down to how effective your regional governance system is.
Municipal fragmentation has been criticised for decades. In Cities Without Suburbs, his influential 1993 book, former Albuquerque mayor David Rusk argued that Rust Belt cities in the US failed to succeed in part because they were unable to expand, and found themselves hemmed in by a jigsaw puzzle of independent suburbs.
But with cities having become central to national governance in the 21st century, institutions like the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the World Bank are weighing in, too. Both recently sounded the alarm about the risks of urban fragmentation on a global level, for the developed and the developing world.
“Often, administrative boundaries between municipalities are based on centuries-old borders that do not correspond to contemporary patterns of human settlement and economic activity,” the OECD observed in a recent report. The thinktank argued that governance structures failed to reflect modern realities of metropolitan life into account.
Behind the report’s dry prose lies a real problem. Fragmentation affects a whole range of things, including the economy. The OECD estimates that for regions of equal population, doubling the number of governments reduces productivity by 6%. It recommends reducing this effect with a regional coordinating body, which can also reduce sprawl, increase public transport satisfaction (by 14 percentage points, apparently) and improve air quality.
The World Bank, meanwhile, is worried about the way rapid growth in developing cities has created fragmentation there, too. Metropolises often sprawl well beyond government boundaries: Jakarta, for example, has spread into three separate provinces. The World Bank calls fragmentation “a significant challenge in the East Asia region”.
In the end, it’s a complicated question and answer
And as the Toronto example shows, amalgamation – bringing fragmented government regions together – comes with downsides of its own. Of course, you can put people in the same governmental box, but that won’t necessarily create common ground – instead, it can create a zero-sum, winner-takes-all dynamic.
People in living in cities and those in their suburbs often have different values, priorities and even a different culture. They can be, as was famously said of English and French Canada, “two solitudes”. Urbanites who support regional governance frequently assume that means more power, money and resources for the central city. But as Rob Ford so richly illustrated, that’s not always the case.
Among those who stand to lose from regional government are minorities. In Ferguson, black residents were already under-represented in government relative to their population. But as a voting block they would find their strength heavily diluted in a merged government: Ferguson is more than two-thirds African-American, while St Louis County plus the city of St Louis together are about 70% white.
Unsurprisingly, central cities tend to prefer regional revenue-sharing without giving up political control. Detroit, despite serious financial problems, has viciously fought sharing control over city assets, even where they serve a broader region. Detroit’s convention centre is a good example of the tensions that can arise: it took years to agree renovations to the building, as despite arguing the suburbs should help pay for the building they partly enjoy, the city did not want to cede any control over it.
Hi 2015, itâ€™s nice to meet you.Â Since our relationship is rather new and still optimistic, I thought I would make some goals before I kick you to the curb a year from now.
Hike to Grey Owlâ€™s Cabin
As WendyÂ noted, we have never done our expedition to Grey Owlâ€™s cabin.Â Itâ€™s a two day walk into the backwoods of Prince Albert National Park.Â It should be a lot of fun.
Explore & photograph some great urban locations
I hate to think of Moose Jaw as a great urban location but it does have some great architecture as does Calgary and Winnipeg.Â My camera and I need to do some some travelling and exploring.Â Letâ€™s not take too long to reflect on the fact that Moose Jaw has some of the best architecture in Saskatchewan.
So the plan is to spend a day photographing and exploring Moose Jaw, Prince Albert, and hopefully a couple of days in Calgary.
Make progress on my book
Last year I was sitting in a Saskatoon City Council meeting listening to our finest elected leaders talk about residential snow clearing and then voting on cleaning some of our streets.Â At the same time I was following Calgary City Council make plans for taking over the world.
Since then I have read more about the formation of cities than I care to think of.Â Why do some cities turn into Calgary or New York City while others turn into Cleveland, Detroit or Regina?Â Why does it feel like we are wasting the boom?Â Why do some cities like Saskatoon allow themselves to be defined by low taxes while other cities defined by the quality of life?
Integrate Evernote into my workflow
I have some big plans for Evernote in 2015 but the biggest is incorporating it into my workflow for columns, roundtables, and this blog.
I use it right now and find it invaluable but I know I can more with it in the future.
Enjoy 2015 more than 2014
2014 was okay but I didnâ€™t enjoy it as much as I wanted to. Â Here is to more coffees on patios, more late nights on decks, and more fires in the backyard.
An amazing long form essay by the Detroit Free Press. Â The answers may surprise you – and don’t blame Coleman Young.
Detroit is broke, but it didnâ€™t have to be. An in-depth Free Press analysis of the cityâ€™s financial history back to the 1950s shows that its elected officials and others charged with managing its finances repeatedly failed â€” or refused â€” to make the tough economic and political decisions that might have saved the city from financial ruin.
Instead, amid a huge exodus of residents, plummeting tax revenues and skyrocketing home abandonment, Detroitâ€™s leaders engaged in a billion-dollar borrowing binge, created new taxes and failed to cut expenses when they needed to. Simultaneously, they gifted workers and retirees with generous bonuses. And under pressure from unions and, sometimes, arbitrators, they failed to cut health care benefits â€” saddling the city with staggering costs that today threaten the safety and quality of life of people who live here.
The numbers, most from records deeply buried in the public library, lay waste to misconceptions about the roots of Detroitâ€™s economic crisis. For critics who want to blame Mayor Coleman Young for starting this mess, think again. The mayorâ€™s sometimes fiery rhetoric may have contributed to metro Detroitâ€™s racial divide, but he was an astute money manager who recognized, early on, the challenges the city faced and began slashing staff and spending to address them.
And Wall Street types who applauded Mayor Kwame Kilpatrickâ€™s financial acumen following his 2005 deal to restructure city pension debt should consider this: The numbers prove that his plan devastated the cityâ€™s finances and was a key factor that drove Detroit to file for Chapter 9 bankruptcy in July.
The State of Michigan also bears some blame. Lansing politicians reduced Detroitâ€™s state-shared revenue by 48% from 1998 to 2012, withholding $172 million from the city, according to state records.
Decades of mismanagement added to Detroitâ€™s fiscal woes. The city notoriously bungled multiple federal aid programs and overpaid outrageously to incentivize projects such as the Chrysler Jefferson North plant. Bureaucracy bogged down even the simplest deals and contracts. In a city that needed urgency, major city functions often seemed rudderless.
When all the numbers are crunched, one fact is crystal clear: Yes, a disaster was looming for Detroit. But there were ample opportunities when decisive action by city leaders might have fended off bankruptcy.
If Mayors Jerome Cavanagh and Roman Gribbs had cut the workforce in the 1960s and early 1970s as the population and property values dropped. If Mayor Dennis Archer hadnâ€™t added more than 1,100 employees in the 1990s when the city was flush but still losing population. If Kilpatrick had shown more fiscal discipline and not launched a borrowing spree to cover operating expenses that continued into Mayor Dave Bingâ€™s tenure. Over five decades, there were many â€˜if onlyâ€™ moments.
â€œDetroit got into a trap of doing a lot of borrowing for cash flow purposes and then trying to figure out how to push costs (out) as much as possible,â€ said Bettie Buss, a former city budget staffer who spent years analyzing city finances for the nonpartisan Citizens Research Council of Michigan. â€œThat was the whole culture â€” how do we get what we want and not pay for it until tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow?â€
Ultimately, Detroit ended up with $18 billion to $20 billion in debt and unfunded pension and health care liabilities. Gov. Rick Snyder appointed bankruptcy attorney Kevyn Orr as the cityâ€™s emergency manager, and Orr filed for Chapter 9 on July 18.
It’s an amazing story and one that many cities could repeat if they can’t make hard financial decisions (Saskatoon loves our debt too). Â Nice job by the Detroit Free Press to bring all of this together. Â Including this great quote.
â€œIt just makes me ill. Almost cry,â€ said former Mayor Gribbs, now 87, who served from 1970 to 1974. â€œYou canâ€™t continually borrow money and use it for operating expenses and expect never to have the trouble of paying it back. Thatâ€™s where you end up going bankrupt.â€
It’s that time of year again when people start searching the web for Christmas gifts for loved ones. For the last several years I have published a gift guide of what to get for your husband on JordonCooper.com and this year is no different. So without further ado (and I know how much we all hate ado), here is my Christmas gift suggestions for your husband/boyfriend/father (and all of the other men in your life). If you have any suggestions, let me know in the comments â€“ Wendy.
Sony RX-100 II
If you are looking for the world’s best point and shoot compact camera, here it is; the Sony RX-100 II.
- It has a huge one inch sensor (which means better low light performance and more vibrant photos)
- It features an extremely fast F1.8 Carl Zeiss lens which again will mean excellent low light photos and action shots.
- Connection to your smartphone via Wi-Fi or if you have a new Android powered phone, NFC.
- Purchase from Amazon.com | $748
- Purchase from Amazon.com | $549
- Purchase from Amazon.com | $120
GoPro Hero 3+
You have probably seen one of the hundreds of amazing videos that have been posted to the GoPro YouTube Channel or seen one of the many thousands of more videos that have been posted over the last couple of years with these amazing cameras. While GoPro has competitors, none match the features that GoPro offers or any of the many mounts that GoPro has to secure the camera to your car, head, chest, poles, floatation devices, or bikes with ease. For $20-$30 you can literally mount a GoPro on anything.
The camera itself is a lot fun with a super wide angle view, HD video, slow motion video, and time lapse features that allow you to film your ideas. Jordon has one and has had a lot of fun over the years with it. Your guy will as well. An added bonus is that GoPro has released a free video editor so you can easily edit and upload your adventures.
- Purchase the Black Edition from Amazon.com | $399
- Purchase the Silver Edition from Amazon.com | $299
- Whatever edition you choose to get, you’ll need a Micro SD card. You can get a high speed card from Amazon.com for $23.
The bright f/1.8 lens lets you capture quality pictures not normally possible with a compact camera. Noise is kept to a minimum without boosting sensitivity, while camera-shake and subject motion are prevented due to high shutter speeds. And thanks to the large aperture, you can also create attractive "bokeh" blurred background effects.
With itâ€™s retro styling, itâ€™s also a camera guaranteed to be noticed even before you take those great photos.
- Purchase at Amazon | $249
Electronics is cool but so is writing stuff down with pen and paper and nothing beats a Moleskine notebook and a quality pen to do that with. You can find really nice Moleskine notebooks in any bookstore but for about half of that, you can find journals at your local Staples or office supply store.
- Purchase Moleskine notebook at Amazon | $29
- Purchase Parker Metro Fountain Pen at Amazon.com | $17
- Purchase Cambridge Business Notebook at Staples | $12
I purchased Jordon a pair of Bose IE2 in ear headphones last year. He put them in his ears and could not believe the difference between them and the $20 headphones he had used forever. As he said, "It’s like hearing my music for the first time again". For Father’s Day, I got him a pair of Bose AE2 headphones that go over the ear and the sound was even better. It’s easy to dismiss high end headphones as not being worth the money but I can really say that these are. Both are incredibly comfortable and bring a bit of luxury to your world no matter where you are listening to them at. Everyone needs a retreat and this does that. I can’t recommend them enough.
If you are looking for a less expensive option, check out JVCâ€™s Xplosive Xtreme headphones. $16 gets you an attractive bass booming set of in ear headphones that are great for everyday use.
- Purchase from Amazon.com | $16
For over the ear comfort and sound at a great price, check out Sonyâ€™s MDR-ZX100 headphones. We have a couple of pairs around the house and they are much loved and oft used.
- Purchase from Amazon.com | $15
Detroit: An American Autopsy by Charlie LeDuff | Jordon grew up with Detroit cable television and for many in our city, they have a close affinity with Detroit. This is the story of what went wrong and is told from a personal perspective. Back in his broken hometown, Pulitzer Prizeâ€“winning journalist Charlie LeDuff searches through the ruins for clues to its fate, his familyâ€™s, and his own. Detroit is where his motherâ€™s flower shop was firebombed in the pre-Halloween orgy of arson known as Devilâ€™s Night; where his sister lost herself to the west side streets; where his brother, who once sold subprime mortgages with skill and silk, now works in a factory cleaning Chinese-manufactured screws so they can be repackaged as â€œMay Be Made in United States.â€
- Purchase from Amazon.com | $21
The Longer I’m Prime Minister: Stephen Harper and Canada, 2006- by Paul Wells | This is the book that every one of our friends is reading or wants for Christmas. In The Longer Iâ€™m Prime Minister, Paul Wells explores just what Harperâ€™s understanding of Canada is, and who he speaks for in the national conversation. He explains Harper not only to Harper supporters but also to readers who canâ€™t believe he is still Canadaâ€™s prime minister. In this authoritative, engaging and sometimes deeply critical account of the man, Paul Wells also brings us an illuminating portrait of Canadian democracy: â€œglorious, a little dented, and free.â€
- Purchase from Amazon.com | $20
Samsung 2.1 Channel 100-Watt Dual Audio Dock | If the guy you are shopping for is a music lover, you will want to consider this amazing Samsung wireless speaker dock. Incredible sound and rich, warm styling makes the Samsung DA-E750 wireless audio dock the perfect addition to your home. The unique vacuum tube amplifier technology lets you hear music the way it was meant to be heard. Compatible with both Samsung and Apple phones, this device lets you stream music using either Wi-Fi or Bluetooth technology, or load it from a USB memory stick.
- Purchase 100-Watt Dock from Amazon.com | $459
- Purchase 40-Watt Dock from Amazon.com | $249
- Purchase 10-Watt Dock from Amazon.com | $85
If your husband is a fan of the radio (nothing better than baseball on a summerâ€™s night over the radio), check out the SANGEAN WR-11 AM/FM Table Top Radio. Elegant simplicity combined with state-of-the-art performance sets the Sangean Model WR-11 AM/FM Table Top Radio head and shoulders above the competition. In true Sangean tradition, AM/FM reception is excellent providing clear and static free listening. Rotary dials adjust the volume, selects AM/FM bands, and precisely tunes your station selection displayed in a softly lighted analog display. An LED tuning eye assures youâ€™re achieving the best reception for your selected station. In addition, a stereo headphone jack and provision for an external AM and FM antenna is also provided. An AUX-In jack for playing your favourite MP3 music from your portable devices is available as well as a Record-Out jack for routing to your recording equipment or external devices.
Plus baseball just sounds better played on one of these radios.
- Purchase from Amazon | $85
X-Mini II Portable Capsule Speaker | Jordon gave me one of these last year and I thought it looked cute and didn’t think much more about it but they work fantastic. The big difference with the X-Mini II speakers is that you can link them together to create better sound as well as more volume. We take ours with us everywhere and its nice at the cabin or even in a hotel room on a vacation. There are some other two speaker options as well but you can find the X-Mini’s almost everywhere and they are about the same price.
- Purchase from Amazon | $20
Keep your belongings, and yourself, stylishly organized with Kenneth Coleâ€™s lovely messenger bag. Contrast stitching accents its rich leather body, while a short handle and long, adjustable strap keep your carrying options open. The flap closure opens up to reveal a roomy main compartment, complete with a full-length zipper pocket for your smaller necessities. Front gusseted pockets include a cell phone pocket to keep it handy and within reach.
Soft, Columbian full-grain leather and casual, but polished styling make this messenger the perfect bag for work and everyday. The interior is simple, but versatile enough to carry a laptop, papers, books, etc. There is even a cell phone pocket plus organizer features in the front gusset pockets.
- Purchase from Amazon | $68 (you save $180)
- Purchase from Red Canoe | $24.99
- Purchase from Red Canoe | $149.99
RCAF Dopp Kitt | Unlike many women who require a small suitcase for their toiletries, a traveling man needs only a few essentials to be happy. Nevertheless, a man needs a place to stow these items. Enter the Dopp kit. Now you can get a $5 shaving kit from Wal-Mart but that has no class What you want is something with personality and I think we can all agree, this dope kit has personality. Not only will it keep you guy’s stuff organized, it will be something he holds on to for years and years.
- Purchase from Red Canoe | $45
Sipping Stones is the aficionado’s choice for chilling a drink. It eliminates a common problem for all connoisseurs of fine whiskey: it cools your drink perfectly without the dilution from melting ice. Now all your favorite drinks are able to be served the way they were intended to be, perfectly pure and precisely chilled. Sipping Stones are non-porous meaning there is no odor or taste to tarnish your drink. And unlike ice, Sipping Stones provides a smooth chill that does not overwhelm the character of your beverage. Each set of Sipping Stones comes with nine finely crafted cubes made from soapstone, a safe alternative to ice. Sipping Stones is a great gift for anyone who loves the perfectly chilled beverage. Or you can use it as a conversation starter at your next party. Simply keep the Sipping Stones in your freezer until you are ready to chill your next glass of whiskey.
- Purchase from Amazon | $15
Finally, how much fun would any guy have playing with an AR Drone 2.0 quadcopter. Itâ€™s easy to fly, records in HD video and if he does crash it (you know he will), there is a large stock of replacement parts.
That being said, the automated features of the AR Drone 2.0 make it almost impossible to crash making it stable platform to fly, do stunts with or film video with. Take a look at the video below to see how it performs
Purchase at Amazon.com | $299
Netatmo Urban Weather Station
The Netatmo Weather Station contains a unique set of sensors to monitor your living environment and wirelessly transmits all your data to your Smartphone. The Netatmo App displays your Stationâ€™s indoor and outdoor measurements into clear and comprehensive dashboards, graphs and notifications. All of your data is recorded online and made permanently accessible for you, on your Smartphone or PC. Seamlessly measure, track and monitor your Weather and Environment, indoor and outdoor, at any time and from anywhere. The Netatmo App is available for free at the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store. With the app you can:
- Connect multiple Stations to your Smartphone or computer
- Check the your Stations from any Smartphone or computer
- Share the info on your favorite social networks
We spend 80% of our time indoor, resting, playing with the kids or at the office. The Netatmo Station monitors your indoor air quality (CO2 concentration), and reminds you to ventilate, at the right moment. The Netatmo Weather Station allows city dwellers to monitor indoor air quality, get real-time updates on local Air Quality Index report and pick the best moments for outdoor activities.The Netatmo Weather Station also monitors noise pollution and measures home or office acoustic comfort.
- Purchase at Amazon | $180
Bushnell 10×42 Binoculars
Bushnell Powerview Roof Prism Binoculars are designed to provide high-quality optics in a versatile and durable format at an affordable price. Constructed with a rugged, shock absorbing rubber armor for a comfortable, non-slip grip and equipped with the roof prism system for increased durability, Powerview Binoculars are suitable for multiple applications from sports to nature viewing. The 10×42 Powerview Binoculars offer powerful 10x magnification with larger, light-gathering 42-millimeter objective lenses that will perform well anywhere you use them–from a bird watching hike to a stadium. Meanwhile the BaK-7 prisms and multi-coated optics provide high-level image resolution and clarity. Additional user friendly details include a center focus knob for easy adjustments, fold down eye cups, and a tripod adaptable base. Bushnell Powerview Binoculars carry a limited lifetime warranty against defects in materials and workmanship for the original owner.
Purchase at Amazon.com | $69
Give the gift of great coffee. Tonx sources the best beans from exceptional coffee farmers who are as fanatical about tasty coffee as we are. To make the best cup, you have to start with the best ingredients. Tonx has years of experience finding and working with the best farmers in the world.
They then ship that amazing coffee to your house. It costs you $19 per 12oz shipment and you have a new shipment coming every two weeks. Thatâ€™s right, fresh coffee beans coming to your house every second week. How awesome is that?
Purchase from Tonx | Prices vary according to plan
He Likes Black Coffee | This is a mug for Jordon. Over the years I have given some cool (and not so cool) gifts but his eyes light up every time he sees a cool coffee mug. Of course there are some limitations. Your guy has to like black coffee but if he does, he will love this gift.
Purchase from Indigo | $10
I am biased because Jordon has been selling some amazing photographs of shots he has posted to The Daily but have you considered the gift of art this Christmas? Image Kind has hundreds of incredible artists selling amazing art on archival quality paper. Not only are you supporting local artists but you are getting someone you love something that they wonâ€™t get at your local big box store. Check out his Saskatoon, rural, and travel galleries. You may be surprised at what you will find there.
Am I missing anything? Do you have some great ideas I should be thinking of? Let me know in the comments.
You can also find all of the rest of the 2013 Christmas Gift Guides online here. There is a lot of great ideas for all of the important people in your life. Good luck with your shopping and have a great holiday season!
Â Boy does this look like a fun. Â What a great idea to start in Saskatoon.
Look at what Detroit Economic Growth CorporationÂ has done for downtown Detroit and I again have to wonder why we are not telling this story about Saskatoon?
Detroit at its peak in the late 1960s before the decline started in the early 70s.
Lowe Campbell EwaldÂ is moving 600 people to Detroit to be a part of the rebirth of the city and I love the video they announce it with. Â After you watch the video, I want to know why more cities don’t do stuff like this. Â Where is the video making the pitch for Saskatoon and being part of the boom and still shaping the city while you can?
I stopped by the Saskatoon Afternoon Rountable to discuss the Riders (and why I no longer cheer for them), Detroit, and the George Zimmerman case.
This is startling news considering that much of the news out of Detroit has been good lately.
I spoke with several people deeply involved in counselling the governor on Detroit, and none doubted that his next move is an emergency manager. Managing the restructuring of the city’s $12 billion of debt and pension liabilities is too complex to be handled through the political process.
There’s also a rumor that more bad news is coming on the pension shortfall that will make erasing the deficit even more difficult.
Pieces are falling into place quickly. The Financial Advisory Board will get an update Monday on the work of the three consulting firms hired to handle the restructuring.
Teams from Conway MacKenzie of Birmingham are embedded in all city departments and are finding broken systems â€” and savings â€” in every single one. The advisory board and Ernst & Young are digging deep into the budgets of each department in an attempt to match spending to revenue.
The goal is to achieve positive cash flow for the first half of the year. By then, the restructuring blueprint being worked up by New York-based Miller-Buckfire & Co will be ready. It will either be used to take the city into bankruptcy or handed to the emergency manager.
Which one implements the turnaround depends on how cooperative Detroit’s creditors are in shaving the debt. If the manger can convince them to take a significant haircut, the city may avoid bankruptcy.
As Jane Jacobs said, “New ideas require old space”. Detroit has a lot of old spaces that will lead it’s comeback.
One of the unfortunate results of a bad housing market is an increase in vacant homes, which has grown by 43.8 percent since 2000, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Homes can be vacant for a number of reasons, but are defined as both rental inventory that are unoccupied and â€œfor rent,â€ as well as homes that are unoccupied and up for sale. As of the 2010 Census, there were approximately 15 million vacant housing units in the country, with an 11.4 percent gross vacancy rate nationwide.
Mayor Dave Bing wants to save Detroit by persuading residents to leave their homes for better neighborhoods, but the city has struggled to accomplish the smallest of relocation projects â€” even when they involve cash incentives.
Two of the most recent initiatives that required moving residents have dragged on for several years, cost millions of dollars and prompted criticisms that the efforts exacerbated blight and left nearby neighborhoods in limbo.
In one case, the city has spent $19 million buying land for an industrial park on the east side that has attracted one tenant. In another, an effort to build a safety buffer near Coleman A. Young International Airport has cost at least $28 million and lasted 17 years, even though it was supposed to wrap up in 18 months.
Critics say the projects should be a warning to Bing, who plans to announce details in the next few months of his Detroit Works Project to possibly consolidate residents into seven to nine neighborhoods. It’s a larger scale than other land-use efforts, but the mayor has little cash to buy properties, won’t condemn land and may instead only offer residents tax-foreclosed homes in nicer neighborhoods.
What an amazing ad. Not only is this the best of the Super Bowl ads, this may be one of the best commercials that I have ever seen. If you are going to drop several million dollars for a 2 minute ad, this is the ad that I would want to have produced.