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Hostel Detroit lays out welcome mat in N. Corktown, targets April 2011 opening

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Detroit has been without the kind of affordable accommodations for budget-minded travelers called a hostel for some time. Yet the increase in adventuresome visitors to the city could mean that Hostel Detroit, slated to open in April of 2011, is coming online at just the right time.

Project coordinator Emily Doerr has signed a lease on a four-unit, 4,000-square foot building in North Corktown that sits on nearly 9,000 square feet of land. The building was built in 1900 and was significantly rehabilitated by owner Jerry Esters ten years ago.

When the entire building is turned over to hostel usage in the spring, there will be a total of nine bedrooms, three that will hold double beds and six that will hold up to 20 bunkbeds. Three kitchens and three bathrooms will be available for guests. A one-bedroom ground-floor unit will serve as office, check-in area, common room and, potentially, a bedroom for the manager.

Doerr envisions the hostel as a "welcome mat" for Detroit. If guests are interested in urban agriculture, art, music or architecture, they would be keyed into that scene by the manager and volunteers. There will be regular dinners and events, open to hostel guests as well as Detroiters.

Volunteer teams are being recruited to implement a sustainable vision for the hostel that includes design, a board of directors, event planning, business partnerships and volunteer and staff management. Anyone interested in participating should email hosteldetroit@gmail.com. Donations of goods and money are also accepted and will be tax deductible.

Source: Emily Doerr, Hostel Detroit
Writer: Kelli B. Kavanaugh
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