Detroit on the rise... part 2

Welcome back for Part Two of our Detroit On The Rise blog series. If you missed part one, check it out here.

As you may have heard or read, the City of Detroit has declared bankruptcy, but, if you look closer, you’ll see it certainly won't affect the resounding efforts of grassroots and private enterprise to keep the Motor City moving forward. Here we go…

The good people at the Brightmoor Alliance are creating and re-creating community-driven land use and quality-of-life infrastructure in the vast Brightmoor neighborhood in Northwest Detroit. They're calling it Restore the 'Moor, and the Brightmoor Alliance wants residents to be the main driving force behind the project, not just to rid the neighborhood of blight or crime, but cultivate community engagement. It's an amazing project and we're looking forward to hearing more about it over the coming months.

For those who like a bit of retail therapy, there’s more good news. The historic “Avenue of Fashion” on Livernois Avenue will undergo $1.7 million in beautification and streetscape upgrades. A restaurant and yoga studio will kick off the avenue's revitalization as the first new major development. Bring it on.

A great new pop-up bike store in downtown Detroit's famed Eastern Market is also on it’s way to becoming a permanent fixture.

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"Hang on to your digital (and analog) gear, people!" Allied Media Projects (AMP) just hosted the 15th annual Allied Media Conference at Wayne State University. This is the seventh year the conference was held in Detroit with the four-day event, featuring hands-on media workshops, panel discussions on online privacy and cloud computing, to strategic science fiction book clubs. Did any of you attend this eye-opening educational experience? Tweet us and let us know.

And, speaking of a tech surge, Lawrence Technological University’s College of Architecture and Design is consolidating its four Detroit-based programs inside a new LTU Center for Design + Technology. Though the flagship Lawrence campus is in Southfield, Mich. (20 minutes north of Detroit), their Detroit Studio, detroitSHOP, Studio Couture, and a satellite classroom and design studio will be headquarted in a new two-story commercial construction development in Midtown at the corner of Woodward and Willis in 2014.

Here's a perfect example of public, private and non-profit entities working together for the greater good. Ten vacant lots in Detroit’s Cody Rouge community are being transformed to create greener and healthier public spaces in the area. Meanwhile, recognising the importance of Michigan (and Detroit) in shaping the look of 20th century design throughout Noth America, a symposium was held in June to honor the state's design expertise.

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And sometimes, the beach comes to you – or at least to the Detroit RiverWalk. On Mondays through to the end of September, you can play beach volleyball on a court with games, beach toys and furniture on a stretch of downtown Detroit’s scenic riverfront. Stay in Detroit after Laneway and get in on the action.

Lastly, we couldn't possibly end this post without mentioning our beloved Pistons. Grantland handed Detroit's NBA team a grade of A+ for their off-season moves, which included bringing back club legend Chauncey Billups, signing free-agent Josh Smith away from Atlanta and drafting Kentavious Caldwell-Pope at #8 overall. Go #Pistons!

Stay tuned. We'll be back with Part Three of Detroit on the Rise in the next few weeks.

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