| Follow Us: Facebook Twitter Vimeo RSS Feed

Featured Stories

2191 Articles | Page: | Show All
First Tee

Across Michigan, programs are using golf to help youth master the game of life

First Tee teaches more than a good swing. It's about life lessons, leadership skills, healthy habits and address local community needs.

Teacher Tamika Nicks in one of Winston Head Start's updated classrooms

The importance of facility quality in early education

Research shows that attention to facility quality and thoughtful classroom design can pave the way to a better educational outcome, augment programming quality, and change the landscape of early childhood education in Detroit.

Kuzzo's Chicken and Waffles

Closing of city's last Big Boy demonstrates why Detroit needs more family restaurants

The family restaurant: a place for people of all ages to get simple, affordable, sit-down meal. It's a dying breed in the city, but hopefully not for long.

Michael Payne

How a 29-year-old teacher in Detroit uses math to address challenging subjects

As a ninth grade math teacher at an art and design school, Michael Payne knows what he's up against. But his relative youth allows him to connect with his students in ways other teachers might not. 

MDARD

Michigan farmers markets: Come for the farm-fresh produce, leave with a stronger community

All across Michigan, farmers markets are open throughout the year and have that special something that brings people together for more than the fruit and vegetables: community.

Jerry Hebron

Video: Oakland Avenue Urban Farm's Jerry Hebron explains what her farm means to the community

The farm not only grows produce for wholesale at the weekly farmers market, but also hosts all kinds of community events, like music performances and workshops.

Niles Heron speaks as rest of panel looks on

5 lessons on failure from Detroit entrepreneurs

On July 27, Model D co-hosted a High Growth Happy Hour event at TechTown Detroit with support from the New Economy Initiative. Here are five lessons from that event.

Monique Tate, digital steward trainer with the Equitable Internet Initiative

How a surprising partnership will result in internet for Detroiters lacking access

Called the Equitable Internet Initiative, the project will provide internet to 150 Detroit households and was made possible by a partnership of organizations with different strengths and missions, coming together for a common cause. 

W. David Tarver

Voices: Entrepreneur and engineer on what happens when your dream dies

W. David Tarver thought he had invented a new and improved synthesizer beloved by Stevie Wonder. But neither of those things were true. In this personal essay, he talks about coming to grips with a failed invention he spent years perfecting. 

Wimauma Cares training session is offered by Enterprising Latinas in Wimauma.

How to create jobs and help neighborhoods prosper? Support local entrepreneurs

Investing in local entrepreneurs and nonprofits that support them can lift low-income neighborhoods out of poverty and help shape a city's future. Nonprofits fueled by innovation and grit in Tampa, Detroit, and Memphis are proof positive that it works. 

The final panel in Bessiake's work, "For the Greater Good ... 00:01"

MNL Voices: Detroit high-schooler describes the emotions he used to make his award-winning artwork

Habacuc Samuel Bessiake, a 2017 graduate of Henry Ford Academy in Detroit, received a national ward for his self-portrait, "For the Greater Good…00:01." In this personal essay, he describes how he created it.

Kenyetta Campbell outside of the Cody Rouge Action Alliance's office space in Don Bosco Hall

A bottom-up approach: Cody Rouge residents develop big plans for their neighborhood

Cody Rouge on Detroit's west side has suffered from blight and depopulation in the last decade plus. But residents, along with several powerful foundations and corporate partners, have developed an ambitious plan to bring the neighborhood back.

A field trip to a farm in Lake Ann

Big and small: sharing early education wisdom from rural to urban communities

In the absence of universal policy for early childhood education, some Michigan's smallest communities are taking it upon themselves to foster kindergarten-ready children.

Niles Heron

Voices: Local entrepreneur and consultant on how to eradicate your fear of failure

In part three of our series on "failure," writer, entrepreneur, and consultant Niles Heron talks about his struggles with fear of failure, and methods to overcome it. 

Jefferson Chalmers Historic Business District

Detroit's next hot commercial corridor: Jefferson Chalmers plots a comeback

In the first of a new series on looking at Detroit's next hot commercial corridors, we examine Jefferson Chalmers, a district with a lot of potential and new businesses, but also its share of challenges.

list-mercy.jpg

Metro Detroit colleges and universities embrace community leadership

Is community leadership something folks are born with or can it be taught? More area colleges and universities are betting that it can—and they're basing their curriculums on it.

Children and providers at Grand Rapids's newest learning laboratory

These 3 new Michigan childcare centers offer the most advanced facilities for children — and adults

Childcare centers are becoming much more than just a place to drop off kids. We look at three Michigan facilities that widen their reach to provide quality experiences for families, caregivers, and entire communities.

HGHH_Failure

Join Model D for the next High Growth Happy Hour on "Failure"

Continuing our engagement with the topic of failure, Model D and the New Economy Initiative will be hosting a High Growth Happy Hour speaker event at TechTown Detroit on July 27.

Some of Nielbock's inventions an designs

Eureka! Metro Detroit continues to be fertile ground for inventors

Metro Detroit revolutionized the world with its automobile innovations. And thanks its engineering prowess and a growing venture capital scene, the area still has a robust culture of invention. 

Children gather around a tray of water during a lesson at Brilliant Detroit

The high cost of limited access to early childhood education in Detroit

Access to affordable, high quality early childhood education enables parents to work and increases the likelihood of academic success for the child. We look at how increased investment in early childhood education can provide a big boost to the city. 

Flying kites at a kite pop-up

Community takes flight at the Detroit Kite Festival

The Detroit Kite Festival, a free event on Belle Isle taking place July 16, represents the convergence of engineering, design, global culture, and community, all bound together by the intangible magic of kites.

MDARD

From grains to glass: Michigan craft distillers produce fine spirits from local crops

Michigan distillers are building their businesses with locally grown grains and fruits. And they say there's room to grow.

Feodies Shipp III at U of M Detroit Center

Do Ann Arbor and Detroit need stronger ties?

Though they're a mere 45-minute drive apart, Detroiters and Ann Arborites often talk about each other's cities as if there's a massive gulf between them. We examine connections between the two cities and how they can be leveraged to greater effect.

Children clean up a kitchen playset at the UM Dearborn Early Childhood Education

Prepared to learn: why early education is so important for Michigan's children

The well-prepared preschooler is kindergarten-ready, and on track for a lifetime of learning success. What skills does this child have, and how can we ensure all Michigan preschoolers are ready for the academic challenges ahead?

Lisa Lipscomb-Jones at Neinas Dual Language Academy

How good teachers are making a difference in Metro Detroit's multiethnic classrooms

American students are more racially and ethnically diverse than ever before. Thats why teachers in multiethnic communities are responding by developing more inclusive curriculums.

Ezekiel Harris, executive director of MACC Development

A common space: Mack Corridor plan takes a community-centered approach to revitalization

MACC Development is the process of transforming the lobby of a former furniture warehouse into a community space called The Commons. That's part of its broad vision for the corridor involving the whole community. 

Runner

5 of the best running routes in Metro Detroit

Looking for great places to run outside this summer? We've got you covered.

Detroit 1967 cover

'Detroit 1967' excerpt: It can happen here

In an essay from the new anthology "Detroit 1967," Desiree Cooper writes about the complicated feelings surrounding Detroit's revival, and how we need to make sure it's rising for everyone. 

Laneshia Talley with kids at Matrix Head Start

The positive signs, and challenges ahead, for early education in Detroit and Michigan

Children are primed to learn from birth, long before they enter the K-12 system. What are stakeholders in Detroit and Michigan doing to increase access to quality early education?

Cummings and Knoer in front of their office window in the Fisher Building looking down East Grand Boulevard

A neighborhood perspective: How The Platform is thinking differently about Detroit development

The Platform has a slightly unconventional philosophy in Detroit's current development scene: inclusivity. That means, primarily, respecting the character and residents of the neighborhoods the company develops in.

MDARD

Incubator kitchens help launch new Michigan food businesses

A small commercial kitchen equipped with the basics could cost $50,000, a price beyond the reach of most beginning food business owners. Luckily, food incubators across the state give them a place for their businesses to grow.

Olivia Henry, youth programs coordinator for Detroit Food Policy Council

Olivia Henry, under-30 leader at the Detroit Food Policy Council, just wants to help people

Henry, 26, recently celebrated her one year anniversary as youth programs coordinator for Detroit Food Policy Council. But she's been involved in public service her whole life.

Amanda Brewington outside her coffee shop, Always Brewing Detroit, soon after opening

Voices: Former owner of Always Brewing Detroit on letting go of her business

Amanda Brewington put everything she had into Always Brewing Detroit before selling it last year. In part two of our series on empowering failure, she writes about the experience of letting her business go.

Shamayim "Mama Shu" Harris, founder of Avalon Village

Building a village: Highland Park's residents take action to rebuild their city

Whether it's offering a safe space for children to do their homework or lighting up the city that had its lights repossessed, some residents of Highland Park are coming up with innovative solutions to their community's problems.

A production conveyor at Grobbel's

The intriguing science and STEM jobs behind Grobbel and Ginsberg corned beef

As science writer Lauren Tanabe discovered, corned beef is the gastronomical magic that occurs when science, technology, and culture intersect with brisket. And it's also the locus of a surprising number of STEM jobs.

salmon.jpg

Out of Balance: The story of salmon in Lake Michigan

Michigan's multi-billion dollar salmon sports fishery is in peril. Check out our interactive to learn the story of how this happened and what officials are doing about it.

Ezekiel Harris

Video: Ezekiel Harris, young nonprofit exec, tells the story of The Commons development

The Commons, a 12,000 sq. ft. building located at 7900 Mack Ave, will be a laundromat, coffee shop, and community center all in one, and an essential component to the residents it will service.

Gathering at Detroit Sip for an installment of Speakeasy

Live6 community dialogue series, Speakeasy, to continue through end of 2017

The Live6 community is working out a number of issues through its monthly Speakeasy dialogue series. Each event is held at a local establishment and focused on an important local issue.

Jordan Polk

Gardening for personal growth: Detroit's youth gardening programs do much more than build skills

Community, healthy living, and sustainability are common themes among youth gardening programs in the city of Detroit—programs that engage young people in a conversation about how to change themselves and the places they live.

Nikolai Vitti, superintendent for Detroit Public Schools

Q&A: New Detroit superintendent Nikolai Vitti on living in Detroit and first steps

Detroit's next schools superintendent has a long to-do list for his first few weeks. Erin Einhorn of Chalkbeat Detroit spoke with Vitti to discuss his early plans, and more.

Alejandra Villegas, pressing records

Wax is back: Detroit is poised to be one of the country's premier manufacturers of vinyl records

With the new Third Man Pressing joining the more than 50-year-old Archer Record Pressing, two of about 20 pressing plants in the entire United States are now located in Detroit.

Natural and LED lighting blend to create a warm environment

Detroit's early childhood centers emphasize design to enrich education

In the early learning environment, even small changes can make a big difference. Here’s how some Detroit daycare providers are boosting learning by improving their facilities.

MDARD

Michigan's newest winemakers are following their passion -- and doing well

Michigan has 127 wineries and produces 2.5 million gallons of wine. This is the time of year when the state celebrates its wine makers and encourages tourists to visit as the wineries show their springtime colors.

Kids and providers at Child Star Development Center

A five-star start: How a rating system is improving quality in Detroit's early childhood centers

Quality matters in early childhood education and child care. Parents want to know their children are engaged and learning from the youngest age. What are the hallmarks of a quality program and who is keeping track?

Some projects developed by students

Detroit youth harness science to create homegrown solutions to neighborhood problems

Thanks to mentorship from several forward-thinking organizations from around the city, a small but growing population of students are ready to tackle the problems of today and tomorrow through the power of science.

Ned Staebler

Voices: TechTown CEO on the value of failure

Failure carries with it an unfortunate stigma, especially in Detroit's business community. For the first entry in a series on empowering failure, TechTown CEO Ned Staebler writes about his failed run for the Michigan state legislature.

The patio at Ottava Via

The 6 best places to eat and drink outside in Detroit

With spring in full bloom, you need to take advantage of the weather every chance you can get. So here are Model D's favorite places to eat and drink outdoors. 

Carla Underwood

Michigan Nightlight Voices: What I learned as a 10th grader about the food system in Detroit

The youth program at the Detroit Food Policy Council teaches students about the local and national food economy through interactive trips and activities. Carla Underwood writes about her eye-opening experience in the program. 

Ford's Wagner development was first conceptualized by the ULI Larson Leadership program.

Collaborative real estate development program makes a difference across Metro Detroit

Urban Land Institute's unique leadership program brings together diverse viewpoints to study some of the region's most vexing development challenges.

James Glenn works at the front counter and lumber desk

Brooks Lumber & Hardware: Building Detroit for over 120 years

Since 1896, the hardware store has sat on the same piece of land in Corktown, outlasting the old streetcar system, Tiger Stadium, and perhaps every other retail business in the city.

Alex Clark

Video: Alex Clark of Bon Bon Bon at Startup Story Night

Earlier this year, five metro Detroit entrepreneurs performed stories about challenges they have overcome to grow their businesses. Watch Alex Clark of Bon Bon Bon tell hers.

Liana Aghajanian at work

A new model for Write a House means more writers in Detroit

Since 2014, Write a House has given away four rehabbed Detroit homes to writers. But because of the city's changing real estate market, they're transitioning to a rental model—which will hopefully mean even more writers in Detroit.

Aaron Foley list

Detroit's chief storyteller: Why the stories of everyday Detroiters matter

The city of Detroit recently created the position of chief storyteller—perhaps the first of its kind in the nation. In a column for Model D, new hire and veteran journalist Aaron Foley writes about his hopes for the job.

Toddlers at Erie Neighborhood House

What Michigan can learn from Chicago about growing early childhood education

Focus on quality in early childhood education is growing. What lessons can Michigan learn about building strong early learning environments that support vibrant communities? And how quickly can we get there?

list-berkley-yellow-door-7.jpg

Metro Detroit's DIY network offers many paths to creativity

There's no shortage of ways to get crafty in Metro Detroit. Local crafting maven Lish Dorset clues us in on ways to embrace our inner makers.

MDARD

Pickled products, beans, flour, fruit and more: Michigan businesses export food with help of state

Here's some advice from Michigan food and agriculture businesses that are making the most of opportunities for exporting.

View of Keyworth Stadium during their game against AFC Ann Arbor

Is being the coolest team in amateur soccer enough? Detroit City FC explores going pro

DCFC has been one of the great American success stories in both amateur sports and soccer. Now they're exploring a jump to professional status.

MDARD

Military veterans find good fit in Michigan’s agricultural economy

Military veterans' leadership training, skills, and perspective give them a grounding they need to help meet the challenges of producing food and rebuilding rural and urban communities. In Michigan, these protectors are turning into agricultural producers.

Ne'Gyle Beaman runs the shop Bleu Bowtique, a seller of custom ties

The newest pop-up space in Midtown helps entrepreneurs test their businesses, together

The Cass Collective provides space to six retailers on a rotating basis so entrepreneurs have the opportunity to test their business without the upfront investment of a permanent shop.

nightlight-pages-9.jpg

Michigan Nightlight Voices: Reading saved my life

One Detroit teacher describes what reading did for him as a youth, and how he wants to impart that same gift to his students.

Babies at a WIN meeting

What will it take to make Detroit a "baby friendly" city?

Detroit's babies are the city's future. That's why health systems, state and local governments, and citizen organizations are standing together to make Detroit the very best place to have a baby. 

Attendees of SOUP fundraisers pay $5 for a bowl of soup and a vote

Every dollar counts: Detroit SOUP and the impact of micro-grants

$5 at a time, Detroit SOUP and its affiliates have sponsored over 150 dinners and raised more than $132,600 for local causes.

Brenna Lane, partner and and director of production and operations at Detroit Denim

Detroit Denim makes sturdy jeans, by hand, with less waste

Even after graduating from the makerspace Ponyride into a bigger production facility and storefront, Detroit Denim has dreams of scaling up further.

amy-sacka-02-750.jpg

The gig economy: Can you make a living freelancing in Metro Detroit?

Be your own boss, work from home, skip the commute—it's the fantasy of many an office drone. But can you survive doing it? Patrick Dunn tells us the story of a few Metro Detroiters who are living the dream.

Skilled Trades

Agricultural skilled trades offer job opportunities for Michiganders

What does not require a four-year college education, is in demand, and pays well? Skilled-trade food and ag jobs. And the opportunities are out there across Michigan.

Ferreyra in the press's warehouse

Detroit's publishing company: WSU Press marks 75 years of excellence in esoterica

In a world populated by numerous university presses and ever-increasing options for reading material, WSU Press seeks niches that it can truly own. And that's what's allowed it to stay in businesses for 75 years. 

Walther Farms

Potatoes, Pop, and JIFFY Corn Muffins: Michigan's agri-businesses thrive and reinvest

Agriculture, food processors, and related businesses employ 923,000 Michiganders—22 percent of the state’s workforce. And many of them are committed to staying, and investing, in the state. 

Colleen Cartwright facilitates a workshop a the Matrix School of Theatre

Michigan Nightlight Voices: Inclusive inquiry through drama

In her role as the director of education at Matrix Theatre Company, Colleen Cartwright has seen numerous students of all ages go through the life-changing experience of creating a collaborative play in a safe space. 

Rendering of Michigan Avenue redesign

Michigan's highway: The future of Michigan Avenue, our state's most important road

In part three of our series on Michigan's highway, we look at the people and projects that will result in massive changes to the buildings, the infrastructure, and the very way we use Michigan Avenue.

Time Jumpers in class

Unearthing Detroit: WSU program teaches kids the skills and value of archaeology

Time Jumpers is a Wayne State University Archaeology Department program where professors and graduate students introduce local students to archeology through fun, hands-on activities. 

Pop Pop's Gourmet Pop Corn

Kernel of an idea grows into family popcorn business under Michigan Cottage Food Law

Gene and Patricia McFarland have built their gourmet popcorn business from a home kitchen operation to a successful storefront where they sell their handcrafted flavored popcorn.

Visitors to "Footwork"

Power of Detroit's creative, corporate partnerships on display at international design festival

As part of the UNESCO City of Design designation, a team of Detroit designers curated an exhibition for the city's entry in the festival in Saint-Étienne, France. The result is "Footwork: The Choreography of Collaboration."

MDARD

Here's what success in building local food systems looks like

From education to certification, programs in the Upper Peninsula are helping farmers and buyers connect. Some of their work will soon be helping farmers in the Lower Peninsula, too.

A cyclist on the Dequindre Cut

Guest column: New bicycle crossing over Detroit River a major victory for non-motorized transit

It will soon be possible to explore both sides of the Detroit River on two wheels or two feet. 

Roosevelt Park and Michigan Central Station

Michigan's highway: The present state of Michigan Avenue, our state's most important road

In part two of our series on Michigan's highway, we look at the extraordinary economic resurgence that's taken place in recent years along commercial strips and downtowns on Michigan Avenue.

A Parducci relief

Q&A: Parducci Society president on the sculptor's legacy and her organization's annual tribute

Model D spoke with Jennifer Baross about Parducci's significance to Detroit, characteristics of his work, and what guests can expect at the society's annual Parducci Tribute at the Masonic Temple.

Joe Spencer, owner of Louisiana Creole Gumbo

Video: Joe Spencer of Louisiana Creole Gumbo at Startup Story Night

On Thursday, January 19 five metro Detroit entrepreneurs performed stories about challenges they have overcome to grow their businesses. Watch Joe Spencer of Louisiana Creole Gumbo tell his.

Judge Larry Williams at 36th District Court in Detroit

Local elected officials of color on race and politics in the age of Trump, part 3

The concluding installment of our Politicians of Color series features a variety of local elected officials, ranging from Washtenaw County commissioner Alicia Ping to Detroit district court judge Larry Williams. 

Intergenerational culinary science is playing out through the "A Taste of African Heritage" coursework

Good cooking takes root: Promoting healthy dietary change through connection to the African diaspora

The "A Taste of African Heritage" diet is a nutritional education effort to address inequities in Detroit's food system by retooling some of the ways Detroiters deal with their health and wellness through eating.

Michigan Avenue, year unknown

Michigan's highway: The history of Michigan Avenue, our state's most important road

In the first of a three-part series on Michigan Avenue, we look at the history of the road, from its construction along the Sauk Trail to its recognition as a Historic Heritage Route.

MDARD Summit

Where seller and buyer meet: Summit extends the reach of made-in-Michigan foods

Demand for food grown locally continues to rise. At the upcoming Pure Michigan Agribusiness Summit buyers and sellers come together to meet that demand.

Winona Bynum, executive director of the Detroit Food Policy Council

Q&A: Winona Bynum of the Detroit Food Policy Council on upcoming conference, equity in food

Detroit Food 2017: Come Together takes place March 9 and 10 and will feature speakers and panels discussing how the food economy relates to issues of equity, health, policy, and more.

Rouhani Foulkes and Kiki Louya at The Farmer's Hand

Detroit and Ann Arbor work together to spread all-local grocery model

A grocery store selling exclusively local products in Ann Arbor is only two years old, but it's already directly inspired a similar business in Corktown.

Detroit councilwoman Raquel Casteneda-Lopez at the Coleman A Young Municipal Center

Local elected officials of color on race and politics in the age of Trump, part 2: City Council

City council members of color from Ypsilanti, Detroit, and Pontiac weigh in on tackling a volatile political climate and how public perceptions have affected their careers.

Jevona Watson, owner of Detroit Sip, outside her coffee shop

Video: Detroit Sip owner hopes to be catalyst for Live6 corridor

Jevona Watson plans to open a coffee shop, Detroit Sip, on McNichols Road in early 2017. A native of the Bagley neighborhood, her story is emblematic of the tenacity of the people who live, work, and play in Live6.

Stephanie Chang at the Michigan State Capitol

Local elected officials of color on race and politics in the age of Trump, part 1: State Reps

State representatives of color from Ann Arbor, Dearborn, and Detroit weigh in on tackling a volatile political climate and how public perceptions have affected their careers.

Illustration of a mastodon in Michigan.

Why does Michigan have a Thumb?

It wouldn't be much of a mitten without a thumb. But exactly how did our fair state's opposable digit come to fruition? Cranbrook Institute of Science's John Zawiskie gives us the geological history.

Student at after-school drop-in

Finding their voice: Creative writing programs provide much needed outlet for Detroit youth

Arts are often one of the first line items cut for stressed schools. That's where creative writing programs have stepped in to provide that programming, both in and out of the classroom.

Kearny in front of her old school, now the Paul Robeson/Malcolm X Academy

The guardians of Martin Park: Two women work to revive their neighborhood in two different ways

The story of Martin Park, where it's been, where it is now, and where it's headed is being shaped by two women—one tied to its past and another grounded in the neighborhood's present.

Lauren Hood, director of Live6

Opinion: Detroit needs to preserve the cultural integrity of its black neighborhoods

In areas where development has been the greatest, many black people have found themselves "pushed to the margins." That's why, argues Lauren Hood, Detroit needs more neighborhoods where those shaping the vision are black.

At the Warby Parker “housewarming” party

Retro Vision: Warby Parker helps reimagine an iconic downtown mural

In designing their downtown store, Warby Parker invited 82-year old Detroit artist David Rubello to reimagine his 1973 mural "Color Cubes"—a public artwork that was lost in 2014.

Exterior of Freedom House

One of a kind house for asylum seekers in Detroit faces uncertain future

Freedom House, a singular organization that offers comprehensive care to asylum seekers, has some difficult decisions to make in the coming months caused by successive pieces of devastating news.

Walter Hicks in front of his home on Detroit's west side

Opinion: Detroit should sell its occupied, publicly-owned homes to their current residents

Each year, more Detroit homeowners become renters, squatters or altogether homeless. Michele Oberholtzer offers a radical solution to this problem: a homestead program to sell occupied, publicly-owned homes to current residents for just $1.

Ferry Farm

Heading home: Roots run deep for many who grew up on the farm

Paul Pridgeon remembers graduating from Central Michigan University and asking himself the question that swirls in the minds of so many recent graduates: Now what?

RecoveryPark CEO and founder Gary Wozniak

RecoveryPark rehabilitates a neighborhood and the lives of returning citizens through farming

A commercial-scale agriculture nonprofit, RecoveryPark also employs Detroiters who have prison records, literacy issues, substance abuse recovery issues, and other past struggles that make it difficult to find work.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officer

Is Detroit a sanctuary city? Depends on who you ask

Sanctuary cities are municipalities that refuse to cooperate with federal authorities in deporting, detaining, or collecting information on residents who may be in the country illegally have recently. Tim Boscarino looks into whether or not Detroit is one. 

Attendees of the event

Perception vs. reality: Safety in Live6 discussed at Speakeasy event

On Friday, January 20, the Live6 Alliance and Model D collaborated for another SpeakEasy event where over 70 attendees participated in a community conversation to discuss the security of the neighborhoods in Live6.

Bradford Frost

In memory of Bradford Frost: It's time to rekindle our romance with the Detroit idea

Bradford Frost, director of Capital Impact Partners' Detroit program and all around great person, passed away this week. Model D is republishing an essay he wrote in 2015 to honor his memory. 

fort-wayne-indian-burial-mound-01-750.jpg

A cultural history of Metro Detroit, Chapter One: Native Americans

Our new series on Metro Detroit's ethnic and cultural history, written by local writer and historian Mickey Lyons, begins with the first Detroiters, Native Americans.

Tomatoes

Greenhouse to grocery: Stocking stores with year-round Michigan produce

You can find a little bit of summer in Michigan tomatoes grown in the winter.

Norma Heath in her kitchen, where kids come to use her laptop.

Bridging Detroit's massive digital divide

38 percent of Detroiters, and 63 percent of its low-income residents, have no home broadband. But people and organizations are helping Detroiters access the internet, and teaching them how to use it.

Kentucky memorabilia

Beans and dobros: Preserving what's left of Appalachia in Detroit

In part two of our series on Appalachian culture in metro Detroit, West Virginia-native Courtney Balestier listens to stories from the Kentuckians of Michigan. And takes home some beans. 

Performance of "Movement Memory Maps"

Citizen innovation, area history on display in Northeast Detroit tour

An initiative called Create Northeast Detroit recently launched a bus tour of the area encompassing Detroit's District 3 council district. Everyone who took it was treated to a number of innovative, grassroots efforts at community development.

Maurice Cox, Director of the City of Detroit's Planning Department

Lessons from Planning Director Maurice Cox on spreading bike culture across Detroit

In a conversation with Model D, Maurice Cox, Director of the City of Detroit's Planning Department, says he'll put extra emphasis on bike infrastructure across the city. 

LaToya Morgan, CDAD's Public Housing manager

A better mix: Detroiters work to expand affordable housing options

There are many common misconceptions about who lives in affordable housing and what impact those communities have on neighborhoods. But the reality is that affordable housing increases stability, support, and mobility to a neighborhood and city.

Artist rendering of Baltimore Station

7 of the most exciting developments in Detroit for 2017

As we step into 2017, let's take a look at some of the development news stories that are sure to influence the way we think about and interact with the city of Detroit.

Claire Nelson, founder of the Urban Consulate, introduces the Speakeasy presenters

Join us for the next installment of Speakeasy: a community dialogue on safety

On Friday, January 20, Model D is once again teaming up with the Live6 Alliance for the third installment of the speaker series, Speakeasy. 

Dave Kwiatkowski

Restaurateur (and optimist) Dave Kwiatkowski has created a mini-food empire in Detroit

After a successful few years at the Sugar House, opportunity came knocking for Kwiatkowski. Since then, he's been opening restaurants and bars at a breakneck pace. 

Erin Cole, co-owner of Nurturing Our Seeds, with her two children, Oshun and Asa

Peace, creativity, and motherhood: The best of Michigan Nightlight 2016

Before we launch into another year of stories about the issues, people, and programs that impact Detroit kids, we wanted to revisit the best-read 2016 Michigan Nightlight stories from Model D.

Michelle Freeman and Jermaine Jenkins, Witty Gritty

Guests from Chicago and Philadelphia meet on Six Mile for an urban exchange

Detroiters gathered on a recent December evening for an urban exchange to discuss ethical redevelopment, community engagement, and ways to empower the next generation of entrepreneurs.

live6artlist

Harnessing art to spur entrepreneurship in Live6

The Live6 area is home to a robust cultural and creative community. And with an increase in development, there's opportunity for artists and institutions to tap into that energy to spur growth.

Anthony Nadar

Detroit property owners plan on green infrastructure to save on water bills

Detroit property owners are going green to save some green on their water bills. 

Kids at Lil Brilliant Mindz

The first school: expanding access to quality daycare in Detroit

Quality childcare benefits Detroit’s working parents today, as well as the workforce of tomorrow. Claire Charlton looks at the importance of daycare and early childhood education, and efforts to expand access in the city. 

Peacock Farms

Michigan tree farms keep Christmas real

Michigan tree farms are the place to make Christmas memories and part of Michigan's growing agritourism economy. 

Erica Pietrzyk of Pietrzyk Pierogi at the Painted Lady

Hamtramck's dive bar-pop ups serve the best food you've yet to try

In Hamtramck, a working class city with a no-frills approach to food, some impressive cooks are popping up. And they're doing so in a Hamtramck staple: the dive bar. 

Raye Townsel using his inhaler

Clearing the air: Health professionals tackle Detroit's asthma epidemic

Detroit has one of the highest rates of asthma in the country. That's why some of the city's most important health professionals are taking action by studying the problem, and finding ways to address it. 

list-stein-park.jpg

Detroit high school students learn how to build green infrastructure in Cody Rouge's Stein Park

The bioswale at Stein Park was designed and built with high school students from the Detroit Institute of Technology to capture water from roadways and infiltrate it into the ground, keeping it out of the city's sewer system.

Takyhai Burns and Jacob Schoenknecht making Mitten Bites

Thinking like a boss: Detroit programs empower youth through entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurship programs across the city engage youth in hands-on, place-based entrepreneurial training, equipping them to both launch their own businesses and use entrepreneurial thinking to solve problems.

Akello Karamoko, a farmer with KGD

Digging deep: Detroiters work to clean up city's toxic soil

As development ramps up in Detroit, understanding what lies beneath our feet is key to the future.

Audra Carson, founder of De-tread

Detroit's reuse economy is turning the city's trash into treasure

Illegal dumping, abandoned buildings, and other sources of trash are serious problems in Detroit. Fortunately, multiple businesses and nonprofits are coming to the rescue by turning the city's refuse into something useful. 

Speakeasy1

You're invited to Urban Exchange Speakeasy

This Thursday, the Urban Consulate is popping up with Live6 Alliance and Model D to welcome guests from Philadelphia and Chicago to exchange urban ideas.

Campus of University of Detroit Mercy

Institutions of higher education an essential part of Live6 growth

The University of Detroit Mercy and Marygrove College have been important neighborhood anchors since their foundings. And with increased attention to development in the neighborhoods outside of the city center, they'll be more important than ever. 

Good Food 1

Diversity of people and perspectives on display at the Michigan Good Food Summit

An epidemiologist and a rock star walk into a summit about good food throughout Michigan. It's no joke. People from across Michigan are coming together to make sure people in the state have access to food that’s affordable, healthy, green, and fair.

MVU Pete Bush

The evolution of online learning in policy and the classroom

The online learning landscape has changed substantially since a decade ago. Natalie Burg explores how online learning has evolved over the last ten years, from the way classrooms work to what it means to "go" to school.

Bolivia5

Guest column: What Michigan can learn from Bolivia's water crisis

You might wonder why a little country in South America should matter to Michiganders. Valerie Vande Panne went to Bolivia to learn about how citizens asserted control over their water systems, and how Michiganders could do the same. 

list-solar-panels-gm-hamtramck-01-750.jpg

A bigger dig: How GM saved millions by reusing stormwater in Detroit-Hamtramck

The General Motors' Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly plant is recycling its own stormwater at an annual savings of over $2 million with green infrastructure.

Starlett Simmons (right) of Five Star Cake Co. with her daughter, Kai Taalib

Entrepreneurship and motherhood: Family first

Despite all the time required to start and run a business, mother entrepreneurs often do so because it allows them the flexibility to be close to their family. 

Chase Cantrell, director of Building Community Value

Combating income inequality: 3 local, practical solutions to a national epidemic

Metro Detroit has one of the highest rates of income inequality in the nation, which is a huge problem for the region's future prosperity. But there are positive, incremental steps Metro Detroiters are taking in their communities that can make a real difference.

Stephen Roginson of Batch Brewing Company

A fermenting culture: Detroit food businesses harness the science (and flavor) of fermentation

Fermentation is an ancient form of preservation that's being popularized for its unique flavor and health properties. Many food businesses in Detroit are likewise finding new uses for this old technique.

Rachel Jones, a senior at the Henry Ford Academy School For Creative Studies in Detroit

The Henry Ford Academy's senior mastery process helps students own their future

The Senior Mastery Process gives high school students at the Henry Ford Academy a hands-on opportunity working for a business or organization to help answer the age old question, "What do I want to be when I grow up?"

A community discussion sponsored by Live6

Join Model D and Live6 for Speak Easy: a dialogue between neighbors

The first of a series of dialogues in partnership with the Live6 Alliance, this edition will focus on the relationship between local institutions and the surrounding communities.

Man and child attending Hamtramck peace rally

Photo essay: Hamtramck rallies for peace and unity

Two rallies for peace and unity took place in Hamtramck earlier this month. Photographer Lauren Montgomery was there to capture them. 

list.jpg

Detroit's urban farms embrace green infrastructure for sustainable water use

Detroit's urban farms are using green infrastructure to reduce their water costs. Along the way, they're helping to improve the city's stormwater system.

list-street-sign.jpg

Can Metro Detroit's municipalities cooperate?

In the wake of a narrow defeat for regional transit, Ellen Vial explores how we might learn from regional cooperation in Pittsburgh and the Twin Cities.

Cherry Capital Foods

Food hubs are the future of Michigan's food economy

They help bring together farmers and consumers, make it easier to eat healthy food, in addition to a host of other benefits. 

Lucy Carnaghi, co-owner of Rose's Fine Foods

Higher wages and split tips: Working for fair pay in the Detroit service industry

The tipping system is the cheapest, easiest legal way for restaurateurs to maintain a staff, but it also has unfortunate side-effects for that same staff. Some in the service industry, however, are rethinking the tip. 

?Lucas, 13, getting his hair cut by Metro Detroit Barber College owner Raymond Ware

Metro Detroit Barber College is both bridge and sanctuary in a changing Detroit

With so many changes happening in the city and Live6 area, Metro Detroit Barber College is a refuge of stability where people from the neighborhood and across the city can get a good cut at a low price with good company.
 

Bioretention at Liuzzo Park

How Detroit's public parks are using green infrastructure to prevent flooding, save money

Detroit's parks are testing grounds for new green infrastructure projects that are changing the way the city manages its stormwater runoff.

list-DSC_0541.jpg

Michigan Dune Alliance helps protect Michigan's iconic sand dunes from invasive species

Michigan's iconic sand dunes are threatened by invasive species. Fortunately, a group of conservation organizations are joining forces to weed out the invaders.

West Virginia University College of Pharmacy Guests at Parke-Davis Home Laboratories in Detroit (1959)

In search of the Hillbilly Highway

Between 1940 and 1960, seven million Appalachians left their home region to find work in places like Detroit. In the first of a two-part series, native-West Virginian Courtney Balestier writes about the history of the migration, and speaks to people who experienced it. 

Erin Cole, co-owner of Nurturing Our Seeds, with her two children, Oshun and Asa

Entrepreneurship and motherhood: Finding strength in overcoming bias

Women and minority entrepreneurs face an unfortunate amount of bias as business owners. But in the second part of our three part series on mother entrepreneurs, Melinda Clynes discovers the strength that comes from pushing through those biases. 

Working on the Osborn Outdoor Education Center

Land minds: 4 creative land use projects aid education of Detroit youth

Detroit has 20 square miles of vacant land. Claire Charlton writes about four projects utilizing vacant land that have the potential to impact the lives of Detroit's youth.

?Jay Rayford (left) with Motor City Match winner George N'namdi, Motor City Match consultant James Feagin, and Motor City Match Winner Godwin Ihentuge

Guest column: My journey to business owner and deeper connections

After being away from Detroit for years, Jay Raford moved back to his hometown and opened up a socially-conscious food business in the Live6 area.

Ron Gurdjian has tended bar at Tom's Tavern since "the late 70s"

In praise of the chill bar

With the announcement of the closing of St. Cece's, a quintessentially chill bar, Amy Elliott Bragg makes a case for the chill bar and lists her favorites. 

Michigan ballot

Two community benefits ordinances in Detroit set for ballot battle

Two bills on this year's ballot could establish a community benefits ordinance in Detroit. Nina Ignaczak delves into what that might mean for the city and the differences between the two. 


Lana Rodriguez, owner of Mama Coo's Boutique

Finding resources faster: Detroit's rich and expanding entrepreneurial ecosystem

There's an incredible number of resources available for a budding entrepreneur in Detroit. Patrick Dunn surveys our entrepreneurial ecosystem to find out where those resources are and how to access them. 

The Jefferson Chalmers neighborhood, located on the far east side, is one of the areas most at risk for flooding and heat stress

How Detroit's climate change activists are using science to plan for a warmer city

As Detroit's climate changes, scientists are working to inform policies that will help the city both mitigate its greenhouse gas emissions and increase its resiliency in the face of a warmer, wetter future.

Pamela Lewis

Pamela Lewis

Pamela Lewis is the Director of the Detroit-based New Economy Initiative, the largest philanthropically led economic development initiative in the United States. 

Garlin Gilchrist speaks at the Detroit Design Festival

Detroit Design Festival showcases city's bright design future

The Detroit Design Festival wrapped up its third annual summit last month and, as expected, there were in-depth discussions about the power of design. But this year's iteration of the festival had special import. 

Anya Babbitt

Why moving to Detroit from New York was the 'best decision' for SPLT

SPLT, a startup that seeks to reduce transportation congestion and mobility barriers, has never looked back since relocating from New York to Detroit.

Tepfirah Rushdan chows down on red clover heads

From fun to fungus: Detroiters get creative with alternative food

The Detroit food economy is growing, in both scale and variety. Sarah Rose Sharp writes about three individuals and businesses involved in food foraging, mushroom harvesting, and bug breeding. 

Michigan Avenue bustling during Detroit Open Streets

Guest column: Open Streets Detroit proved the value of pedestrian zones

Open Streets Detroit closed 3.7 miles of road to vehicular traffic and opened it to people. Jessica Meyer recaps what took place during those two exciting days. 

Alexis El-Amin, owner of The Mason Jar: Get Holistically Healed, a food store at 4088 W. McNichols Road. El-Amin recently moved to Detroit from Wilmington, N.C. and opened her store not long after in the University District.

Photo essay: This is Live6

Photographer and Detroit-native Bree Gant captured some of the people and places that make Live6 unique.

KeShon Demps, owner of Ingrid's Bakery & Shon Benson's Candy Creations

Love on Livernois: What Sweetest Day looked like in Live6

On October 15, lovers and those expressing affection across the Midwest celebrated Sweetest Day. On the Ground editor Terryn Hall checked out Live6 businesses to see how owners and patrons were marking the day. 

rgttr-list.jpg

Rain gardens to the rescue: How Detroiters are working together to protect water infrastructure

Detroiters must deal with a new drainage fee to help pay for water infrastructure. Fortunately, an innovative program will help residents reduce those fees, while also soaking up water on their land and helping their neighbors.

bus-list.jpg

3 regional transit systems Metro Detroit can learn from

We checked in with experts in three very different American cities—Cleveland, St. Louis, and Los Angeles—to gather lessons as our own transit system takes shape.
 

Karen Guilmette, owner of Natural Red, with three of her children

Detroit's mother entrepreneurs: these women started businesses and ended up with happy families

In the first of a three-part series looking at the challenges of being both a mother and entrepreneur, Melinda Clynes writes about women seeking financial independence in business.

Nailah Ellis-Brown

As Ellis Island Tea grows, founder Nailah Ellis-Brown makes hiring local a priority

Since founding the company in 2008, Ellis-Brown been named one of Forbes' "30 Under 30" in the manufacturing industry and her beverages are now available in Meijer and Whole Foods stores across the Midwest.

CEO and co-founder of Castle, working at Rebirth House

"Generation Startup" shows it's possible to build and scale a startup in Detroit

The documentary, which follows six people working or owning startups in Detroit, presents both the joys and challenges of running a startup. 

Exterior of the new Live6 headquarters

New Live6 Alliance headquarters and its homegrown director bring energy to neighborhood

Once completed, executive director Lauren Hood hopes the headquarters will serve as a local gathering place where people can connect, deepen ties, and share ideas.

Grandville Avenue Arts and Humanities Teen Leaders in the Arts participants Egypt Kyles, Karen Pacheco, Emmanuel Zavala, Antonio Jaimes, and Edgar Jaimes.

Leading through the arts: Teens across the state are transforming Michigan's creative landscape

When it comes to incorporating the voices of youth in arts programming, Michigan is leading the way. Teens in Ann Arbor, Detroit and Grand Rapids are bringing a fresh perspectives to important issues through the lens of art. 

Frank McGhee, director of NSO YIP, mentoring a group of young Detroit men

Revisiting Osborn: What's happening with the stories, people we covered 3 years ago

In 2013 Model D launched its first On the Ground series in Osborn. As Model D launches a new series in the Live6 neighborhood, we wanted to check in on some of the stories and people we covered.

Shakiya Robertson with her kids, from left to right, Kye'Ren, Kyi'Lei, Davion, and Ky'Shaun in front of their home

In search of solutions to Detroit's foreclosure crisis

In the second installment of our series on Detroit's foreclosure crisis, David Sands looks at the organizations and people developing innovative solutions to keep people in their homes. 

Audra Kubat

Detroit songwriter Audra Kubat helps youth find their voice

The singer/songwriter, who's been working with youth in schools to develop their musical voice, is releasing her first album in a decade in a series of shows at the DIA.

Members of "The Seen"

Detroit style: How some of Detroit's fashion-makers define their city's aesthetic

With the opening of several international-brand retail stores and news of the redevelopment of the Hudson's site, Detroit's fashion scene is once again in the spotlight. But as Muna Danish discovered, brands are much less important than style in Detroit. 

Green infrastructure panel

4 things to know about Detroit and green infrastructure

Model D recently hosted a panel at Detroit Beer Company on ways Detroit can harness its green infrastructure potential. Here are the most important takeaways from the event. 

Terryn Hall

Meet Terryn Hall, Model D's next On the Ground editor

Our next "On the Ground" series will take place in the Live6 neighborhood and we're excited to introduce the series' editor, Terryn Hall. 

Nerissa Street

Immersive "idea lab" celebrates artists as community leaders

Artspace’s annual Breaking Ground event evolves this year from one dynamic evening of speakers and performances to an immersive, two-day "idea lab."

Carol Miller

It's Miller Time: Meet the Detroit educator who's helping solve water issues around the country

Carol Miller has taught at Wayne State for 30 years and influenced countless students. She's also part of a prestigious cohort of water-quality engineers that's made an enormous contribution to the health of Michigan's waters.

Exterior of the Hawkins Ferry House

Five of the greatest modern buildings in Metro Detroit

We asked Brian Conway, editor of a recently released book on Michigan's contributions to design, to list his favorite modern buildings in Metro Detroit. 

feral-swine-3-list.jpg

Michigan's pig problem: What to do if you see a smart, tusky animal in Michigan's outdoors

Feral swine are an invasive wild boar intent on devouring Michigan's natural landscapes and farmland. Mark Wedel tells us why these tusky invaders are a growing threat in Michigan.

David Alade, left, and Steven Harris, right, on the steps of a building newly purchased by Harris

A new beginning for the North End

The North End has seen terrible times, as residents and community members attest. But thanks to the efforts of developers, artists, and others with a vision, the narrative is shifting. 

Comic books at a vendor display

The Detroit comic con that's changing perceptions of race in comics

A lot more people are making the pilgrimage to Detroit this fall to attend MECCA, a black-centric celebration of geekdom and creativity.

Former site of Saint-Étienne’s military manufacturing activities, the Manufacture

Three things to know about Detroit's City of Design designation

UNESCO's City of Design designation has helped members transform their cities through design. Ellen Schneider of the Detroit Creative Corridor Center writes about how Detroit can harness that same potential. 

Kresge Mayor's Fellow Diana Flora

Open data: How access to public data is growing in Detroit

For years, Detroiters had a hard time getting reliable data in a digestible format. But thanks to greater transparency from city government, and the work of a host of other companies and organizations, access to data has never been better. 

Detail-work by Nielbock, incorporating the iconic "Spirit of Detroit" statue

Restoring memories and forging futures with Carl Nielbock of CAN Art Handworks

CAN Art Handworks, a metalsmithing facility that specializes in the restoration of historic architectural metalwork, might best be summed up in this simple mission statement: learn from history in preparation for the future.

HopCat Detroit

HopCat: the 'anti-chain chain'

What started as a hobby has become big business for HopCat owner Mark Sellers.

Chinatown kiosk at Peterborough and Cass

The yin and yang of Detroit's fastest changing neighborhood

For the first article in our series on walking as a means of neighborhood discovery, Walter Wasacz heads to Chinatown, a place where booming economic activity confronts history. 

immigration-list.jpg

A region of opportunity: How Metro Detroit is helping its immigrant population succeed

In the second installment of our series on solutions to regional issues, we explore how cities and community groups are helping Metro Detroit's immigrants overcome the many challenges they face when coming to America. 

Kids having fun at the Palmer Park playground

The People's Park: How grassroots organizers have reinvigorated Palmer Park

A real sense of energy and community has emerged at Palmer Park, thanks in large part to the nonprofit People for Palmer Park.

Green Alley List

Harnessing Detroit's green infrastructure potential

Join us on Thursday, Sept. 8, when five panelists share how they've made an impact on the city by using nature to create a balance between built and natural environments.

Flash Delivery

Founders of Detroit's Flash Delivery keep their plates full

When entrepreneurs recognize just how well their skills complement each other, there’s no limit to their potential for success. Into their third year together, Ericka Billingslea and Tatiana Grant are feeding Detroit by growing Flash Delivery at a steady pace. 

Students in the program roleplay as police officers

Keeping the peace: Wayne State program continues longtime work of youth conflict resolution

As the 50th anniversary of the Detroit 1967 approaches, Wayne State University's Center for Peace and Conflict Studies continues to challenge tomorrow's young leaders to take action today.

Tom and Vicki Zilke of Zilke Vegetable Farm

Eastern Market's 10-year plan will shape our region's food economy

The ambitious plan will modernize the market by creating an enterprise zone for food processing and a new entity to act as broker between Southeast Michigan farmers and commercial consumers.

The Mercy Mignight Storm Robotics Team. From left to right, mentors Rachel Aptowitz and Nada Alhamdi, students Brianna Bryant and Kandis Chow, and Keysha Camps

This all-girls robotics team wins competitions and minds

Participation in Mercy Midnight Storm, an all-girls robotics and science team in Southwest Detroit, has been a truly empowering experience for all its members. 

Walter Hicks in front of his home on Detroit's west side

To fix the foreclosure crisis, we first have to understand it

A home foreclosure crisis has gripped Detroit for over a decade. In the first of two articles, David Sands delves into the extent of the crisis and the people working to understand it. 

Carla Hamilton

How affordable artist housing can help cultural communities celebrate themselves

Since Artspace developed its first project, the Northern Warehouse Artists Cooperative in 1990 in the Lowertown area of downtown St. Paul, the organization has created 40 additional art spaces across the country.

Pashon Murray

Through business stardom and personal struggles, Pashon Murray remains focused

Pashon Murray, co-founder of Detroit Dirt, has visited the White House, been featured in a Ford commercial, and written about in national magazines. All this publicity has been great for her composting business, but it hasn't come without difficulties.

The corner of the Bagley Trumbull Market, future location of a sushi restaraunt

Unpacking the formula for success in Detroit's oldest neighborhood

Small business development in Corktown has grown tremendously over the past decade. So much so that it's worth looking to as a model for other Detroit neighborhoods angling for revitalization.

urban-sprawl-list-01.jpg

In search of alternatives to urban sprawl

Metro Detroiters have been living with urban sprawl for more than a generation. Patrick Dunn dives into one of our region's most controversial topics in this first installment of our series on solutions to regional issues. 

Safety and traffic are big questions when cycling in Michigan.

Biking Michigan: Politics and safety

In part two of Biking Lake Michigan, writer Mark Wedel tackles some of the political realities surrounding biking in Michigan.

list-zebra-mussel-noaa-flickr.jpg

Interview: Author William Rapai on invasive species and the Great Lakes

What impact are invasive species like the zebra mussel and the round goby having on the Great Lakes? And why does it matter? We interview the author of a new book on invasive species in our beloved blue waters.

list-sherman-oaks-royal-oak-03-750.jpg

Seeking a "missing middle" in Metro Detroit's housing market

Even as demographics shift and preferences change, most Metro Detroit developers are sticking with a familiar playbook of detached single family homes. But a few intrepid builders are testing the waters with "missing middle" housing.

Carla Walker Miller

Success beyond startup: Walker-Miller invests in energy, diversity

By definition, startups have to start somewhere. But in order to really gain traction, small businesses must reach “second level” to create jobs and contribute to the economy on a bigger scale. Carla Walker-Miller, president and CEO of Walker-Miller Energy Services, talks about how to make this leap, and why “leaning out” is so important for growth and diversity.

Chelsea Neblett

Local farmers markets build community around Metro Detroit

Despite easier and cheaper options for organic food, Detroiters still seem eager to spend money at local markets. And the reason is community. 

Macho City at Briggs

From glorious to inclusive: The past, present, and future of Detroit's LGBT spaces

In the '70s and '80s, Detroit had a strong and proud gay presence with a hub in Palmer Park. While that "gayborhood" no longer exists, the city is steadily reclaiming its LGBT heritage, and becoming more inclusive as a result. 

Biking in Michigan can take you through both peninsulas.

Biking Lake Michigan: A long-distance adventure

Writer Mark Wedel offers up a personal account and lessons learned along the U.S. Bike Route 35 through northern and western Michigan, the first in a two-part series on long-distance bike routes in the state.

Downtown Ferndale

New study confirms economic impact of eight placemaking assets every community should have

What assets make a community strong? You might be surprised to learn that the things that deliver the biggest economic bang for the buck aren't what's traditionally discussed in Michigan.

Carla Walker-Miller of Walker-Miller Energy at Cafe con Leche

10 lessons about scaling your business from our #HighGrowthHappyHour

Last year, Southeast Michigan Startup began telling the story of high growth companies in Metro Detroit. Here are our 10 favorite lessons from those #HighGrowthHappyHouse meet-ups.

Khali Sweeney

The Downtown Boxing Gym is much more than a boxing gym

Carlo "Khali" Sweeney is the founder of a boxing gym on Detroit's east side that develops good citizenship in urban youth through a wide variety of educational and fitness programs and voluntary service. 

Sarah Ayers in her workshop

Garment designer Sarah Ayers adds some chic to Detroit's grit

Since opening her clothier business, William and Bonnie, two years ago, owner Sarah Ayers has created a niche for herself as Detroit's go-to seamstress and garment designer.

The 36th District Courthouse

Small Claims: A slow journey to justice in the 36th District Court

Working a case through small claims court can be can be a terrible burden. Michele Oberholtzer describes her path to "justice" at the 36th District Court, and explains why she was one of the lucky ones. 

Andrea Eckert next to the work of Holding House resident artist Emily Duke

The rapid increase and persistent issues of Detroit's art gallery scene

In recent years, there's been a proliferation of art galleries in Detroit. While that's mostly been a positive, it does come with some caveats. 

Mosaic in Clark Park

Young creatives strengthen neighborhoods through art, community-driven funding

The resident-driven grant program, Community Connections, has helped fund numerous initiatives focused on uplifting Detroit's youth. 

list-good-wood.jpg

Good wood: How you can enjoy your campfire this summer while protecting Michigan's forests

Without campfires, there's no s'mores. But without restrictions on moving firewood around the state, there might not be healthy forests. Mark Wedel explains why.

Walter Wasacz

10 Years of Change: Harnessing the power of P-Funk

Former Model D managing editor Walter Wasacz reflects on the changes he's witnessed in the last decade in Detroit, and how to harness the power of P-Funk to inspire your own. 

A Slow Roll ride in Detroit

Opinion: Slow Roll has lost its way

Slow Roll, a weekly bike ride through a Detroit neighborhood that attracts thousands of riders, is ostensibly a casual affair meant to engender good will between cyclists and residents. But, as Mickey Lyons writes, recent rides have accomplished the exact opposite. 

Carbonell and Hooton get a lesson from Talea de Castro farmers

Local coffee shop gives back to Mexican farming town

Not only did Cafe Con Leche's owner and in-house roaster visit the town where their coffee is grown, they also decided to give back a percentage of each bag of coffee they sell to those same farmers.

McUsic and Carreon outside their home

The Eco-House: How a couple took green renovating to its limit

Since beginning renovations on their home in Detroit's West Village in 2013, Alessandra Carreon and Drew McUsic have considered the environmental effects of nearly all their decisions.

Rosa Parks Transit Center

Rosa Parks Transit Center to get facelift

The city of Detroit has allocated $850,000 this year and next to fix up the Rosa Parks Transit Center, which has seen better days.

Sarah Pappas of Fresh Cut Detroit

Foraging for flowers with Fresh Cut Detroit

Model D followed Sarah Pappas, owner of Fresh Cut Detroit, during one of her flower foraging excursions and learned a great deal about Detroit's unique and varied collection of wild flora.

Wild Strawberry. Credit: Wikimedia commons.

Planting for tomorrow: Replacing aggressive species to promote diversity

Advice from our resident garden expert, Brian Allnutt, on how to add a little diversity and eco-friendliness into your garden landscape this summer.

jj-list

Juice bar unites Grosse Pointe and Detroit kids around healthy food

The border between Grosse Pointe and Detroit is a study in contrasts. One entrepreneur is working to bridge that divide by bringing kids together to learn about healthy food.

Exterior of the Green Garage

Green Garage turns five: How a business incubator created a lasting model for sustainability

The small business incubator and coworking space in Midtown has proven that its triple bottom line approach is a successful model.

Mark Mothersbaugh's Myopia

From Jocko Homo to Pee-wee's Playhouse: it's a beautiful world

This summer, Mark Mothersbaugh's "Myopia" will enchant Clevelanders and Akronites alike with a host of surreal characters, giant graphics and all things DEVO.  

El Moore's facade

The greenest apartment building in Detroit

Tom and Peggy Brennan, founders of the Green Garage, have also rehabbed a nearby historic apartment building that's stunning in both its beauty and energy efficiency. 

Mike Medow, Morgan Willis, and Jenny Lee of Allied Media Projects

Becoming the media: Allied Media Conference celebrates 10 years in Detroit

This year marks an important milestone for Allied Media Conference, a nationally-significant conference that that utilizes media and technology to advance social justice. 10 years ago, AMC relocated to Detroit, a move that ushered in significant changes.

Chuckie Finster

Video: Stand-up comedy showcase finds loyal following in unlikely venue

The monthly stand-up comedy showcase Chuckie Finster, which takes place at Recycle Here, has to be seen to be appreciated. That's why we sent filmmaker Michael Babbish there last month to find out what makes the show so popular.

CNU

Model D’s guide to one of the biggest city-think gatherings of the year

New Urbanists coming to Detroit for CNU24 have dozens of talks, events, and workshops they can check out each day. Here's some Model D-affiliated events (plus a few more) to consider attending.

list-trail

Your 2016 guide to the new and next on Metro Detroit's trails

Metro Detroit is home to over 1,000 miles of trails—with even more being planned and built every year. Here's what to expect as you plan your next non-motorized adventure.

"SEMBENE!" is about the life and work of Ousmane Sembene

An interview with the co-director of "SEMBENE!", a movie about "the father of African cinema"

"SEMBENE!", a movie about the highly influential Senegalese director Ousmane Sembene, will be screened at the Cinetopia Film Festival. Model D spoke with co-director of "SEMBENE!" Jason Silverman about the movie, and what it means to screen it in Detroit.

Elliot Wilhelm, director at the DFT

Despite few theaters, Detroit's film culture proves resilient

Detroit doesn't have many options for a night out at the movies. But the selection that does exist is strong and caters to a niche market of loyal customers who love film. 

meg heeres

Detroit artist grows awareness of Michigan's invasive plants by making them into paper

Through making paper from Michigan's invasive plants, Meg Heeres is raising awareness about an environmental threat while empowering people to make something beautiful.

A.L. Holmes Elementary School students

Detroit Public Schools welcomes blended learning into the classroom

When blended learning—a mix of online instruction and live teachers—came to the classroom, some feared a battle of high tech versus high touch, a world of kids plugging into computers and the teacher rendered obsolete. But what has evolved at one Detroit school is a system of high tech and high touch.

Mayor Karen Majewski

The strong, tolerant women leading Hamtramck

While Hamtramck is a prominent cultural melting pot, it is also a municipality with strong women at the helm. Annamarie Sysling profiles the city's mayor, police chief, and city manager.

Edsel and Eleanor Ford House

Landscapes of luxury: A guide to metro Detroit's public gardens

Metro Detroit is home to some spectacular gardens and greenspaces—all open to the public. Writer and garden expert Brian Allnutt tells us which to visit this spring and summer. 

Gathering at House Opera

Crowdfunding creatives: House Opera begins buildout after successful fundraising campaign

Crowdfunding certainly isn’t unique to Detroit, but it’s definitely useful in a city where banks can be reluctant to dole out loans. That's why countless business and nonprofits like the event space House Opera are turning to crowdfunding.

Peterboro's seaweed salad

It's never been easier to eat vegan in Detroit

PETA recently named Detroit one of the top vegan-friendly cities in the U.S. While the animal rights group noted the many restaurants that cater to vegans, there's actually a lot of non-vegan restaurants that serve these diners as well. Writer (and vegan) Jessica Meyer tells us her favorites.

Hemlocks line the banks at Tahquamenon Falls in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

Aliens in the woods: Invasive species pose number one threat to Michigan forests

Despite what Smokey Bear may have told you, fires aren't the number one threat to forest ecosystems (at least not in Michigan). According to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, invasive species are what we should be most worried about.

Brightmoor, Detroit Futbol League champs in 2011

From the Archives: The inaugural season of the Detroit City Futbol League

The Detroit City Futbol League has been a mainstay of amateur soccer in the city, and done so with a lot of Detroit flare. We revisit the league's inaugural year, 2010, with a video from the archives.

aviationsub

Aviation Subdivision: A neighborhood in two cities

A tale of two cities...in one neighborhood. David Sands digs into the mystery of the Aviation Subdivision, a unique community straddling the border of Detroit and Dearborn.

Mary Aganowski has tended bar at the Two Way Inn since 1981

Detroit's veteran bartenders reflect on over 30 years behind the bar

Most seasoned bartenders will tell you that the more things change, the more they stay the same. But for these tenured tenders, the view from the bar illustrates the story of Detroit’s dynamic transformations.

reflecx

Regional transit: DDOT, SMART join forces on express bus service

The refleX line will link city and suburbs with express bus service. Some see it as a big step forward for regional transit, others say the money could be better spent elsewhere. 

Paxahau today (left to right): Sam Fotias, Jason Clark, Chuck Flask, and Jason Huvaere

Constant 'Movement': 10 years managing one of the world's largest electronic music festivals

In 2006, Detroit's renowned electronic music festival nearly disappeared for good. That is, until Paxahau took on the challenge of running it. 10 years later and the festival is as strong as ever.

From "The Radicalization Process"

Meet the Hinterlands, your friendly neighborhood theater revolutionaries

The vivid, boundary-stretching productions the Hinterlands creates are wonders to behold that reflect an unusually profound engagement with their subject matter. 

Author Sean Ammirati

Venture capitalist to speak in Detroit about "The Science of Growth"

Sean Ammirati is coming to Detroit this Thursday, April 28 to discuss his new book, "The Science of Growth," which gives future entrepreneurs a blueprint for growing a successful startup.

Soulardarity's leadership team: Nikkia Jones and Jackson Koeppel

Community lighting group to potentially partner with Highland Park on ambitious project

When the gutting of Highland Park's lighting grid left residents in the dark four years ago, a grassroots group called Soulardarity sprang up to try to remedy the problem. Now, they're attempting to forge an unprecedented partnership to light the entire city with solar power.

Castle's cofounders renovating their house in Detroit

Tech startup finds creative solution to living and working in two different cities

Many startups find Silicon Valley oversaturated and are seeking opportunities in cities with nascent tech scenes. Castle, a property management tech company, is doing just that in Detroit.

Boating on the Grand Canal in the early 1900s

Belle Isle and Olmsted's forgotten legacy

Frederick Law Olmsted designed Belle Isle, but his plan was lightly implemented and even counteracted by future developments. Brian Allnutt argues its time we reexamine Olmsted's original plans to better inform future use of the island.

The Avenue of Fashion

From the Archives: Boulevard of dreams

Remember when Livernois was nine lanes wide? Check out this article from 2007 anticipating the Avenue of Fashion's transition into a two-lane boulevard, a crucial step in the district's revival.

Paul Riser, director of technology-based entrepreneurship at TechTown

Innovation district has the potential to "supercharge" Detroit's economy

The Brookings Institute has identified areas that contain concentrations of universities, research institutions, and companies as "innovation districts," or places that "supercharge the economy." Many believe Midtown Detroit could be that kind of place -- a nexus of innovative thinking and commercial development for the entire region.

The Slyde Team

Avenue of Fashion restaurant to bring new approach to an old favorite

The restaurant Slyde will upgrade a classic American dish, the slider, by locally sourcing almost all of its ingredients, and operating in an energy-efficient, community-driven development project on the Avenue of Fashion.

garlicmustard

Invasives, beware! Michigan gets organized about fighting exotic species

The collaborative approach to fighting invasive species is—pardon the pun—growing like a weed in Michigan. Find out how we stand a better chance of eradicating nature's monsters through collaboration.

Dr. Tonya Matthews

Opinion: How to combat bias in STEM

Dr. Tonya Matthews, President and CEO of the Michigan Science Center, writes about what we can do to resist bias against girls in science education and hiring.

Guy Kenny in Glassline’s Plymouth studio

The versatile material and company that's restoring Detroit's downtown architecture

Glassline recreates lost or deteriorated architectural elements for historic buildings that are undergoing rehabilitation. And they're making them all out of fiberglass.

Kamal Rahman of BAPAC at Aladdin Sweets and Cafe

The future of Hamtramck is being built today

Business development in Hamtramck is booming thanks to a mixture of immigrant entrepreneurs, who kept large parts of the city afloat during economic hardships in the 1990s, and newer owners looking to experiment. 

Shaka Senghor

Shaka Senghor

Shaka Senghor is a New York Times best-selling author, a highly respected and sought-after speaker, a mentor and teacher, a criminal justice reform activist, and an ex-con who works to put a human face to incarceration and show that transformation is possible. 

Inaugural Cross Stitch Creative class

College for Creative Studies and Mars Agency collaborate on unique program for design students

The Cross Stitch Creative program gives College for Creative Studies design students first-hand experience in working for and learning from an industry-leading shopper marketing agency. But that's not the end of the story. 

Lining W. Grand Boulevard

How Detroit became a city of trees

More than 50 years before Dutch elm disease, a treacherous caterpillar pest spurred the city to action on an ambitious plan for its street trees.

billcraig

Restoring the Rouge is 'about getting the community to the river'

When Bill Craig heard about a golf course coming to a local wetland, he started getting active. And he's been that way ever since.

detroitriver

Cleaning up the past for a brighter, 'bluer' economic future in Michigan

Michigan's 'blue economy' presents plenty of opportunities for Michigan's economic future. But first, the state must clean up the sins of its economic past.

Bob Burns

A lifetime on the water: Robert Burns on why public access is key to fixing the Detroit River

Robert Burns grew up hunting and fishing along the lower Detroit River. Today, he leads work to clean up the river's toxic sediments while creating wildlife habitat, and says reconnecting people with the waterway is key to its future.

elizabethpark

Overcoming a bad rep: Detroit and Rouge River headed for recovery

How much can you really clean up and restore waterways that have been subjected to more than a century of intense industrialization and urbanization? In the case of the Rouge and Detroit rivers, there has been definite progress.

Patronicity team at work

Detroit's civic funding scene gets crowded

Community organizers and entrepreneurs have more choice than ever when it comes to asking the public for funding. But is the landscape getting 'crowded'? Nina Ignaczak digs in to find out what's going on in the world of civic crowdfunding in Detroit.

James "Famous" kicks

Commuting to school with a "Famous" student

Detroit public students students often have no other choice but to wake up hours before school starts to ride a city bus (or two) on their long morning commute. Matt Dibble shares his thoughts after following one "Famous" student.

Gerry list

Parking lot Gerry

A portrait of a Detroit parking attendant who's been keeping vigil on the same block in New Center for the last 30 years.

Anu Rangarajan, Cornell Univesity; Nicola Binns, Marlboro-Essex Community Garden; and Lorenzo Herron Detroit Urban Farmers Network

7 ways to build a healthy food system in Detroit

Ideas from the sixth annual summit of the Detroit Food Policy Council, which took place last week.

Students listen to an instructor at the Detroit Training Center

How a startup training center is rebuilding Detroit's workforce

The Detroit Training Center has graduated over 1,500 students since it launched in 2012. According to Marcus Jones, DTC's director, graduates find jobs paying anywhere between $12 and $40 an hour, depending on the field.

Karla Henderson

Karla Henderson's varied career in Detroit leadership

Karla Henderson is the Chief Operating Officer of the Wright Museum, a position in which she leverages her background in city planning, community engagement, and nonprofit management to grow this important cultural institution. 

ameera_list

City and country: How metro Detroiters enjoy the best of both worlds

From urban neighborhoods to woods and water, southeast Michigan has it all. Model D's Laura Herberg and Marissa Gawel show us how metro Detroiters take advantage of it in the photo-audio-essay.

Guisa Suttle and Maria Fernandez glazzing and fitting glass at Turner Restoration's workshop

Meet the Detroiter whose historic restoration skills are in demand around the country

Jim Turner has been working in historic restoration since 1988, when he purchased his home in Detroit's Arden Park-East Boston Historic District.

Steve Neavling, investigative reporter and founder of the Motor City Muckraker

These Detroit-area journalists are breaking big stories...without the backing of major news outlets

These guys aren't playing by the rules of traditional journalism. They're re-writing them.

Urban Consulate

We, the people, of the United Cities of America

We urban folk are more alike than we are different, and might benefit from listening and learning more from one another. That's the conversation we look forward to hosting at the Urban Consulate, a new experiment launching this spring in Detroit, Philadelphia, and New Orleans. 

Terry Schwarz

Terry Schwarz

Terry Schwarz is the Director of the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative, a combined urban design graduate program and urban design practice nonprofit that uses planning and design to address social issues in neighborhoods throughout Northeast Ohio. 

Grace Bedell's letter to President Lincoln encouraging him to grow his whiskers

The hidden treasures of Detroit Public Library's special collections

Original manuscripts by Mark Twain and Laura Ingalls Wilder, George Washington's diary, and some of the earliest writing ever can be found in the special collections of the Detroit Public Library.

Escalators in Medellin's Comuna no 13 San Javier neighborhood

Designing the equitable city: A conversation about the value of local and global exchange

Detroit and Medellin, Columbia, are very different cities, but there's a lot they can learn from one another when it comes to involving citizens in equitable development.

Torri Lynn Ashford with a puppet at Matrix Theatre

Matrix Theatre Company celebrates 25 years of performance, community, and social justice

As a part of its silver anniversary celebration, Matrix is putting on a production of "agua de luna," a bilingual work by award-winning playwright Caridad Svich.

Detroit satirist and Dirty Show founder Jerry Vile

Finally, Detroit can stop taking itself so seriously

Satire is on the rise in the city, and that's a good thing.

Detroit's West Canfield Historic District

Michigan's primary tool for preserving historic buildings and neighborhoods could disappear

Bills in Michigan's legislature would fundamentally change how historic preservation works in neighborhoods throughout the state.

Flint Water

Opinion: Policy ideas to fix Flint's water crisis (and help avoid another)

These fixes aren't just for Flint; they would also buttress other Michigan cities' deteriorating infrastructure.

By D.M. Ferry & Co.; Henry G. Gilbert Nursery and Seed Trade Catalog Collection. [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0) or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Notes for the beginning gardener: Seed catalogs and mind-gardening

Whiling away the winter with dreams of your summer garden? Pick up a seed catalog to help pass the time.

A student skates by CCS's Art Centre dormitory

How WSU and CCS transformed from commuter schools into 24-hour campus communities

By building on-campus housing and improving spaces for students and the public, Wayne State University and the College for Creative Studies are quickly losing their reputations as commuter schools and becoming places that are active 24 hours a day.

City of Design

What does it mean for Detroit to be a 'City of Design'? DC3 wants your input

"Detroit City of Design cannot simply be a moniker or a logo," write Olga Stella and Ellie Schneider of Detroit Creative Corridor Center. "It must be an attitude backed up by collective action." That's why they want to hear from you.

Brian Rebain

Ruins to riches: Brian Rebain and the architecture of revival

Behind every great historic restoration project, there's a great architect. In the case of many of downtown's most prominent buildings, that person is Brian Rebain.

Skating on the ice rink at Clark Park

Defrost your heart at Clark Park's annual Valentine's Day skate

Organizers of Cold Hearted, an annual Valentine's Day benefit for the Clark Park Coalition, are hoping that uncharacteristically warm temperatures have put you in the mood for some classic winter fun – an outdoor skate at Clark Park in southwest Detroit's historic Hubbard Farms neighborhood.

Kaylan Waterman

Kumbuka offers a literary way to celebrate black history in Detroit

Kumbuka, a literary event happening Feb. 16, will incorporate multiple generations of African-American Detroiters, each reading their own literary selection. 

Making tempeh at the Brinery

Could one of these metro Detroit food startups be the next Garden Fresh?

Ferndale salsa maker Garden Fresh recently sold to Campbell's Soup Co. for $231 million. Could one of these three businesses be the next big story out of metro Detroit's food economy?

L to R: Sam Vaughn, Neighborhood Change Agent; Rohnell Robinson, Peacemaker Ambassador; and Devone Boggan

Devone Boggan

Devone Boggan is the Director of the Office of Neighborhood Safety in Richmond, California, a non-law enforcement government agency with a specific focus to reduce firearm assaults and associated death by engaging the very people most at-risk. 

James A. Turner restoring a window to historic standards

Opinion: Michigan's Historic Districts Act isn't broke, so don't fix it

Historic preservation has been a crucial economic driver in Detroit’s continued revitalization.

Avalon Bakery

Building a better Detroit through inclusive neighborhood development

"If we're serious about nurturing development that increases opportunity for all, we have to get comfortable stressing market growth as well as equitable development practices for disadvantaged and historically underserved populations."

Food Justice Fridays hosted by People's Kitchen Detroit

Can Detroit become a food-sovereign city?

Undeniably, Detroit's local food movement has exploded. But can it one day feed the entire city?

Kids participate in an 826Michigan leads a writing workshop at the Campbell Branch Library

How the Detroit Public Library is staying relevant to kids in the 21st century

From a teen hangout featuring a makerspace to creative writing workshops for pre-teens, the Detroit Public Library offers a variety of programs that are relevant to 21st century kids.

Claire Nowak-Boyd in front of the now-demolished Park Avenue Hotel in Detroit

Opinion: Buildings belong to all of us

"We know the name of the architect of Grand Central Station, but who swept the floors?"

Chief Holt in WSU's public safety command center

How Midtown became Detroit's safest neighborhood

Collaboration between institutions and law enforcement agencies, led by Chief Anthony Holt and the Wayne State Police, has led to a 52 percent reduction in crime in Midtown since 2008.

Historic Elmwood Cemetery

Historic Elmwood Cemetery designated Detroit's first arboretum

There are over 1,400 trees on Elmwood's grounds, representing 91 species, including black locusts, hawthorn, beech, willow, ash, American plum, and domestic pear.

Detroit Sip

Second round of Motor City Match grants announced

The second round of Motor City Match grantees, who will receive a combined $500,000 in awards, are located throughout Detroit. They include a gourmet slider restaurant, a neighborhood pharmacy, a bike and coffee shop, among others.

An Offworld Arcade pop-up at Checker Bar

Gaming goes Offworld in Detroit

Don Behm started his vintage arcade business, Offworld, by tinkering with classic games in his garage. 

The Michigan Central Railway tunnel under construction in 1910

The 7 man-made wonders of Detroit

Detroit's wonders might not be as obvious as those of other cities, but what they lack in grandeur they make up for in their quality of engineering and the practical advantages they give our region.

Alex Linebrink, founder of Passage

How metro Detroit small businesses can avoid the risks of mobile payment

Convenient and easy-to-use mobile payment technologies are increasing in popularity among metro Detroit's small businesses, but they can pose security risks. Here are a few tips on how small businesses can ensure the security of their customers' and their own financial information.

1983, Gratiot and Chene, Detroit

Steve Shaw, Detroit photographer

Over three decades' worth of Shaw's photography will be on display at a solo show opening Friday, Jan. 15, at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit.

John Brown III and Fletcher Sharpe, co-hosts of The Outer Drive, a podcast about soccer in Detroit

Detroit podcasts you need to be listening to

There's something for everyone in Detroit's exploding podcast scene. Here are a few of our favorite shows to get you started listening local.

Matthew Piper

10 Years of Change: A writer's reflection

Regular Model D contributor Matthew Piper reflects on the joys and challenges of writing in and about Detroit over the last decade.

Ypsilanti Transit Center

3 things that could transform metro Detroit in 2016

The Regional Transit Authority millage, partnerships between Silicon Valley and Detroit, and sprawl are a few things we'll be keeping a close eye on this year.

Detroit Green Map icons

Thanks to a new tool, it's easier being green in Detroit

With a simple keyword search, the Detroit Green Map shows users interested in sustainable practices where to buy solar panels, where to recycle, where to volunteer, and more. 

Young Detroit chess players wait to play Grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura

Our favorite stories of 2015

A look back on some of Model D's best stories from the last year.

Sandy Kronenberg

Impact investors swing the hammers that are building the new economy in southeast Michigan

Investing in a startup is one thing. Making an impact with that investment is another. A growing class of impact investors is putting smart money into scaling Metro Detroit's new economy, and it's paying big dividends.

Streetscape improvements on East Jefferson

How investments in talent and capacity are helping nonprofits transform Detroit

In recent years, philanthropic investments have been building talented capacity within neighborhood organizations. The results are impressive.

Lisa Brush

Michigan's big wins and losses in the fight against invasive species

A Q&A with Lisa Brush of The Stewardship Network, a group that has revolutionized how Michigan's land managers strategize and collaborate to keep natural areas healthy, functional, and free from invasive species.

Lauren Hood, director of Live6

Adapting the Midtown model to the neighborhoods

The Live6 Initiative is adapting lessons learned from the redevelopment of Midtown, including an anchor institution strategy, while paying close attention to residents and a unique neighborhood context.

Greater Lakes

Video: Healing roadways in the Great Lakes with green infrastructure

See how green infrastructure can greatly reduce the negative effects of our roadways on the Great Lakes.

regionalism

Regionalism in metro Detroit 1850-2015: An abbreviated timeline

A brief overview of the deep-seated challenges to true regionalism in metro Detroit.

Conan Smith

In last decade, metro Detroit communities take big steps to address regional problems

Metro Detroit's communities have begun to realize the importance of thinking and acting regionally. Can they build on the momentum of the last decade when it comes issues like equity, transit, and the environment?

Piety Hill residents enjoy working out in their neighborhood

How one community group is using vacant lots to build a healthy 'hood

Central Detroit Christian CDC is transforming vacant lots into workout stations with the goal of creating a healthy community -- in more ways than one.

Paul Hickman of Urban Ashes

Rescued from the ashes: Discarded trees find new life as handcrafted products

Still looking for that holiday gift? You might consider local artisanal wood crafts made from Michigan's urban forests. 

Dan Armand and Jesse Cory

1xRUN is the future of art

In November 2015, 1xRUN (one-time-run) celebrated its fifth anniversary of delivering limited-edition, time-released prints through its e-commerce store.

Keegan-Michael Key

Keegan-Michael Key on Detroit, work post-Key & Peele, and hyphenated first names

In advance of his Dec. 22 performance at the Detroit Institute of Arts, Model D spoke with Keegan-Michael Key, Detroit's biggest comedy star, about his hometown, his work post-Key & Peele, and his hyphenated first name.

Cos play at Youmacon

Inside the strange, wonderful world of Youmacon, Detroit's Japanese culture festival

Gamers, costume afficionados, and anime lovers find acceptance at Youmacon, a three-day convention held in downtown Detroit that's anything but conventional.

(Left to right) Maruf Sourav, Liza Bielby, Mumbi Roy, Ahana Roy and Akram Hossein

Bangla School of Music thrives in neighborhood known for artists and immigrants

In the Play House in Banglatown, Akram Hossein teaches the traditional music of his homeland to a new generation of singers.

Humbug Marsh, Detroit International Wildlife Refuge

The 7 environmental wonders of southeast Michigan

We may not have mountains (or even molehills, for that matter), but southeast Michigan is home to unique natural wonders that are being rediscovered and restored in the postindustrial era.

OST Security Practice Manager Scott Montgomery

Michigan small businesses are at a greater risk of cyber crime than many believe

Small business owners often believe they're simply too small to be at risk for cyber crime. Nothing could be further from the truth. Here's how at risk small businesses are from cyber threats, and what they can do to start protecting themselves and their business. 

Tim Johnson, director of transportation initiatives at NextEnergy

From Motown to Gotown: Detroit can lead the development of smart city tech

Tim Johnson, director of transportation initiatives at NextEnergy, argues that there is no better place to be than Detroit when it comes to developing the technologies that will make our cars, buildings, and cities smarter and more efficient.

Dawn DeMuyt of Labrosse Farms making ketchup

Charting a new course for Detroit's farm-to-table movement

Partnerships between local food businesses -- from farmers to processors to restaurants -- are resulting in a new model of growth for Detroit's food economy.

Noel Night

Stop by Model D's Noel Night pop-up marketplace on Dec. 5

On Saturday, Dec. 5, we invite you to Model D House for a Noel Night pop-up market featuring a handful of Detroit small businesses.

The A. Alfred Taubman Center for Design Education at CCS

Inside the Argonaut, Detroit's creative hub

In 2009, the College for Creative Studies re-opened General Motors' Argonaut Building as the A. Alfred Taubman Center for Design Education. In just a few short years, it has become a major hub for creative culture and industry in Detroit.

Dan Carmody, president of Eastern Market Corp.

5 ideas for creating public spaces for everyone in Detroit

On Wednesday, Nov. 18, Model D readers gathered at the Outdoor Adventure Center to discuss what we can learn from welcoming public spaces like the Detroit Riverfront and Eastern Market. Here are some takeaways.

Soil

Notes for the Beginning Gardner: Building your soil in the fall

Winter is coming, but it's never too soon to start thinking about next year's garden.

Bioswale under construction in Cody Rouge's Stein Park

How Cody Rouge is becoming Detroit's leading neighborhood for green infrastructure

Flooding has long been an issue for Detroit's Cody Rouge neighborhood, but nonprofits, the city, and residents are taking action to mitigate the negative effects of stormwater on the community. Their latest project, a bioswale in Stein Park, is currently under construction.

Creative economy

The state of the creative economy in Michigan

Michigan has over 73,000 people working in various creative industries, contributing significantly to the the state's economy and those of its biggest cities. But according to Creative Many, we have lots of room to grow our creative sector.

Malik Yakini, Detroit Black Food Security Network & D-Town Farms

Creating a cultural shift in how Detroiters think about food

A combination of grass roots programming and improved access to fresh food in neighborhoods is helping change the way Detroit eats.

An infill single family home in Morningside

A brief history of housing in Detroit

We kick off a three-part series on housing in Detroit with an examination of how the single-family home became the city's dominant housing type.

Sean Mann

Mann: Help Detroit City FC create the most exciting and accessible sporting atmosphere in the U.S.

Detroit City FC founder and co-owner Sean Mann makes the case for why you should invest in the team's renovations of historic Keyworth Stadium in Hamtramck.

The Detroit International Riverfront

Healing fractured water: How Michigan's roadways impact our waterways

In the Great Lakes, we drive to get where we are going. And with tens of thousands of lane-miles of roadway across the basin, in both urban areas and rural areas, the impact of all of that hard surface on our waterways adds up.

A tyke on a trike on Farnsworth Street

In search of Detroit's most beautiful blocks

An arbitrary assortment of Detroit locations we find beautiful, presented for your edification.

Detroit Experience Series

Win tickets to Nov. 14 Detroit Experience Series tour of East Jefferson Corridor

Detroit Experience Factory and Model D have teamed up to bring you the Detroit Experience Series. The latest installment features a tour of the neighborhoods of the East Jefferson Corridor happening Saturday, Nov. 14.

Open City

Thank you, come again: Customer service the subject of Nov. 16 Open City discussion

The fate of a small business can easily rest upon the quality of its customer service. On Nov. 16, a panel of experts will gather at Cliff Bell's to discuss the finer points of good customer service at Open City's latest event, "Thank You, Come Again: Why Good Customer Service Matters."

Kids play along the west riverfront

Join us Nov. 18 for "Where Detroit comes together," a Model D speaker series event

On Wednesday, Nov. 18, Join us at the Outdoor Adventure Center to discuss the places and spaces where the whole region comes together.

The Garden Theatre Beaux-Arts facade

How a unified vision helped transform Detroit's greater downtown

The neighborhoods of Detroit's greater downtown have come a long way in recent years, but change didn't come all on its own. This special report examines how the Hudson Webber Foundation's 15x15 Initiative created a unified vision for change among a diverse group of stakeholders that's helped shape the Midtown and downtown of today.

Ponsella Hardaway, Hunter Morrison, Michael Ford, and John Austin discuss regionalism at the DIA

5 ideas for creating a shared regional vision for southeast Michigan

On Oct. 27, a group of metro Detroiters gathered at the Detroit Institute of Arts to hear a panel of experts discuss something that's long eluded the communities of southeast Michigan: how to create a shared regional vision to become more globally competitive.

ARTLAB J

Moving with Detroit: ARTLAB J, a different kind of dance company

ARTLAB J started off solely as a dance company, but as founder and president Joori Jung started to listen to people in the community, she transformed her troupe into a multi-faceted nonprofit organization.

Music Cities Convention

The "no curfew economy" and other ideas for Detroit from the Music Cities Convention

A conference held last week in Washington, D.C., discussed the pros and cons of music-based economic development strategies. Here's what Detroit can learn.

GRPS List

An urban outlier: How Grand Rapids Public Schools became efficient and effective

As the district rides the success of its Transformation Plan, Grand Rapids Public Schools is becoming an outlier among urban public school districts in Michigan. What lessons can other schools learn from Grand Rapids?

Sommer Woods

Pushing for inclusive development along Woodward Avenue: Sommer Woods and M-1 Rail

"Development can be so much more productive if there are more perspectives at the table: people of color, women, older people, younger people, white men," says M-1 Rail's Sommer Woods. "When you have all these people at the table you're guaranteed to have perspective instead of one monolithic project."

h2d-250

Haute to Death dance party celebrates 8th b-day with Halloween bash at Temple Bar

This week, Haute to Death will celebrate its 8th anniversary with an Oct. 31 bash that promises plenty of tricks and treats. As a part of "10 Years of Change," our series celebrating Model D's decade of publishing in Detroit, check out this feature from 2010, which discusses the origins of Haute to Death on the occasion of its third birthday party.

7 Brothers Bar

Where Detroit's actors drink: The story of 7 Brothers Bar

From all appearances, 7 Brothers Bar in Hamtramck is, well, a bar. But it's also the number one hangout for actors and theater performers in Detroit.

Colorosity

Win tickets to Colorosity at the Michigan Science Center

Learn how you can win tickets to Colorosity, the annual science soiree at the Michigan Science Center.

Scott Hocking stands in front of his barn boat

A new American Gothic

In a sugar beet field in Michigan's Thumb, Detroit artist Scott Hocking is transforming a deconstructed 1890s barn into a boat.

Quest Skinner.jpg

Artists can be the "connective tissue" of a neighborhood -- but first they need a place to live

How affordable live/work housing for artists can reinvigorate neighborhoods and bring members of diverse communities together.

The former site of the Park Avenue Hotel

The battle for buildings: Looking back on a decade of historic preservation in Detroit

In the last decade, efforts to preserve some of downtown's most prominent buildings have had mixed results.

United Sound Systems

Giving United Sound, Detroit's other landmark music studio, its due

It may not have the name recognition of Motown, but the United Sound Systems Recording Studios, the oldest operating independent recording studios in the country, are just as important.

Open City

Open City celebrates 8 years of building Detroit's small business community

Over the last eight years, Open City has helped create an informal community of Detroit entrepreneurs who help each other succeed. The ninth season of Open City kicks off Monday, Oct. 19, at Cliff Bell's.

Daniel Land at work at the Michigan Science Center

Art and science collide in Daniel Land's video work at the Michigan Science Center

Artist Daniel Land and New D Media's video installations have appeared at the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Movement Electronic Music Festival, but what might be their most interesting work will be on display at the Michigan Science Center.

Sooshin Choi, Provost of the College for Creative Studies

Selling world-class talent on Detroit

Detroit may not have the prestige of Cambridge, Massachusetts, or the weather of Miami, but when it comes to recruiting global talent to work at its anchor institutions, the city has a lot to offer.

Future Proofing Detroit

4 ideas for future-proofing Detroit

Between new businesses and residents moving downtown and improvements to city services, there is plenty of opportunity to make the future better for all Detroiters. Here are four ideas for "future-proofing" the city that came out of a panel discussion last week at Bamboo Detroit.

A bike lane on Van Dyke in Warren

What are metro Detroit's most bike-friendly communities?

Who are the contenders and who are the pretenders? And how are we creating a shared vision for a regional network of cycling infrastructure in southeast Michigan?

Flower House

Blossoms against blight: Hamtramck's Flower House opens this weekend

Event planner Liz Andre-Stotz was a little surprised last year when her florist friend Lisa Waud called her and several others with a "crazy idea": buying a house for the express purpose of filling it with flowers.

Josh Lin mural

Bucking national trends, venture capital on the rise in Michigan

Once upon a time, venture capital in Michigan was small and inconsequential. Today it's powering the Great Lakes State's new economy, growing at a time when the industry has shrunk.

Global Detroit

Reshaping the Rust Belt through immigrant talent

How America's former industrial heartland is reclaiming its economically powerful past by attracting foreign-born residents.

Water

Exploring the public health consequences of Detroit's water shutoffs

The narrative around Detroit's water shutoffs has largely centered on people needing to pay their bills or water as a human right. Missing from the conversation have been the mental and physical health impacts of the water shutoffs on a city with an already staggering poverty rate. 

Sandstorm Hits the Temple

Detroit art cars go to Burning Man

Francis Grunow sees Detroit's connection to Burning Man (and its worldwide network of burners) growing even stronger in the coming years.

The Alger Theater

What it takes to save a neighborhood theater on Detroit's east side

For the Friends of the Alger Theater, it takes dedicated volunteers, hard work, and, of course, money.

Nina Bianchi

10 Years of Change: Taking little steps for the long run

"Detroit seems to be in relentless search of the right plan to lead the way," writes Nina Bianchi, "[But] can a city rely on a singular, scripted manual?"

Jerry Paffendorf

4 ideas for fixing Wayne County's auction of tax-foreclosed properties

In advance of round two of Wayne County's annual auction of tax-foreclosed properties, here are some musings from Jerry Paffendorf, co-founder and CEO of Loveland Technologies, on how the county and city of Detroit can better deal with their foreclosure problem in 2016.

Resident Teronto Robinson speaks with a colleague at the Thea Bowman Clinic, a partner of the DMC

How Detroit anchor institutions are developing local talent

Through a handful of programs, local anchor institutions are getting Detroiters ready for the jobs of the future.

Khalil

10 Years of Change: A Detroit for us, by us

Local urban planner Khalil Ligon encourages us to dream beyond what we can see and come together to realize a collective vision for Detroit.

Jarrod Bell leads a workout at CrossFit BMW

Detroit gets tough: Fitness culture on the rise in the city

In recent years, a handful of gyms have opened in Detroit, each offering a unique style of training while contributing to a growing fitness culture in the city.

Chinook Salmon

Invasive or just non-native? Why Michigan loves Pacific salmon and fears sea lamprey

Michiganders are rightly on alert for invasive species. But not all non-native species are invasive. Here, we explore the benefits of some of Michigan's non-native species and how we distinguish if a newcomer to the ecosystem should be loved or feared.

David Egner

Life after elephants: Detroit's entrepreneurial awakening

The New Economy Initiative's executive director writes about how NEI helped change economic development in Michigan from hunting "elephants" to building a network of support to foster entrepreneurship, small business growth, and innovation – from grass roots to high-growth. 

Mike Score, president of Hantz Woodlands

Nowhere to go but up: Growing metro Detroit's tree canopy

After being battered by Dutch elm disease and then emerald ash borers, the number of trees in metro Detroit and Michigan's other urban centers has nowhere to go but up. And groups around the region are helping accelerate that growth.

Plum Street Farm

Looking back on a decade of growth in Detroit's urban ag movement

As we celebrate a decade of publishing in Detroit, we look back on the growth of the city's urban agriculture movement in recent years.

A young Detroiter in the produce aisle

Fighting food insecurity in Detroit

Food insecurity is one of the biggest challenges to the healthy development of young children in Detroit, but a number of groups and programs are working to change that.

Teach for America Detroit Danielle Stringer, Peter Grace, Kammy Webb, Latoya Asaya

Why teacher diversity matters in Michigan

In Michigan, there's a large discrepancy between teacher and student demographics. But does a teacher’s race matter when it comes to effective teaching and student success? And what’s being done to address the lack of racial diversity in Michigan’s teachers?

Waiting on the bus

Detroit, one man, one month, no car

As a part of our "10 Years of Change" series, we revisit this piece from 2008 in which Terry Parris, Jr. reflects on his experience of going carless for a month in the Motor City. What he learned might surprise you.

People enjoying the Michigan Avenue parklet

Can a short-lived parklet be the start of a major transformation of Michigan Avenue?

Existing just over a week, a parklet in front of Astro Coffee in Corktown was dismantled by MDOT workers over Labor Day weekend. Will its short life help inspire the long-term transformation of Michigan Avenue from a car-centric thoroughfare into a people-centric Main Street?

Katoi's menu

While it builds out a home in Detroit, Katoi gets up and running in Ann Arbor

Katoi, a Thai eatery which started as a Detroit food truck, recently opened a brick-and-mortar location in Ann Arbor while a permanent Detroit restaurant is under construction.

Transparency is an overriding theme of the downtown Y's architecture

10 Years of Change: Giving the downtown Y its due

Bold and forward-looking when it opened in December 2005, the Boll Family YMCA continues to lead by architectural example as the central business district burgeons around it.

Paulette Auchtung, planetarium coordinator and staff astronomer at the Michigan Science Center

Inspiring curious minds: Detroit women in STEM

Detroit grows stronger with contributions from women in science, technology, engineering, and math fields.

grosse_Ile_018

A remarkable tale of slavery and opportunity in early Detroit

The history of an old church on Grosse Ile is a remarkable tale of slavery and opportunity in early Detroit. Here's the story of the church's founder, Elizabeth Denison Forth, an ex-slave who became the first black woman to own property in Michigan.

Grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura takes on 50 Detroit-area chess players at once in the DIA's great hall

Chess grandmaster faces 50 Detroit-area students...and meets his match

Chess Grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura, the strongest American chess player (currently fourth-ranked in the world), played a simultaneous exhibition (or, simul) against 50 metro Detroit-area students. The results weren't as lopsided as you might think.

Rendering of the completed Activi-Tree

Detroit does Grand Rapids: Activi-Tree is heading to ArtPrize, and it needs your help

Activi-Tree is much more than a cool space made from a hodgepodge of repurposed (celebrity) garbage and artwork – it's a space for sharing ideas and building relationships. And you can help program it when it heads to ArtPrize.

Summer in the City

Summer in the City ends season by painting huge mural on Crowell Community Center

On Friday, August 14, the forecast called for rain, but that didn't stop 1,200 people from showing up at the Crowell Community Center in northwest Detroit to put in an honest day's work as a part of Summer in the City's annual Finale Friday.

Colin Hubbell

Remembering Colin Hubbell, a developer, champion, and friend of Detroit

You may not have known Colin Hubbell, but his mark on Detroit's greater downtown endures 7 years after his death. Enjoy this remembrance that former Model D managing editor Clare Pfeiffer wrote when Colin passed in August 2008.

Parjana's Greg McPartlin and Andrew Niemczyk

Detroit company poised to revolutionize how cities manage stormwater

Parjana's Energy Passive Groundwater Recharge Product has the potential to revolutionize the way cities manage stormwater by increasing the efficacy of green infrastructure and alleviating burdens placed on aging sewer systems.

I-94 in Midtown

10 Years of Change: An argument against widening I-94

In June 2013, Tommy O'Flynn urged Model D readers to oppose dated plans to expand I-94 where it runs through Midtown. Since then, the Michigan Department of Transportation has scaled back those plans, though dozens of buildings are still threatened.

Project Genesis 2015 class

Program for Detroit high schoolers a template for building healthcare workforce of future

With a shortage of workers looming, a Detroit program could prove a national template for developing the healthcare workforce of the future.

Maia Crown Williams, organizer of MECCAcon

The changing face of the comics industry is on display in Detroit

This fall in Detroit, two new conventions will bring the work of women and people of color to the forefront of the comics industry.

Mt. Biking (Arcadia Bluffs)

Vacationing in the trees: How forests are helping to grow Michigan's tourism economy

Sandy beaches and boating may be the quintessential tourist attractions in Michigan, but forests are driving a growing segment of the state's tourism economy. Here's why healthy trees matter for growing jobs and local economies in Michigan. 

Detroit Experience Series

Explore transformation in three neighborhoods with Detroit Experience Series tours

As we celebrate our 10th anniversary, we invite you to experience neighborhood transformation in Detroit firsthand through the Detroit Experience Series, a partnership between Model D and the Detroit Experience Factory.

The People Mover track where it enters Cobo Center

One-track mind: What I learned spending an entire day on the People Mover

After 17 hours, 52 revolutions, and 150 miles, Model D contributor Aaron Mondry learned a few things about himself, the people of Detroit, and Michigan's longest municipal rail system.

Frank McGhee, director of NSO YIP, mentoring a group of young Detroit men

Detroit groups work to develop young men of color into leaders

Young men of color are some of the most at-risk members of our society, but several groups in Detroit are working to tap into their leadership potential.

Bridget Russo, CMO of Shinola

Join us for High Growth Happy Hour, happening August 19 at Shinola

High Growth Happy Hour is a series of casual gatherings where successful leaders and entrepreneurs share their stories to help you scale your business. The first will take place August 19 at Shinola's Midtown store and feature Bridget Russo, Shinola's CMO.

Fine dining with Michelle Damon

10 Years of Change: Remember when ex-Tiger Johnny Damon's wife badmouthed Detroit?

Remember Johnny Damon's one season with the Detroit Tigers in 2010? Probably not. Remember this 2010 Model D piece by Sean Mann in response to the ballplayer's wife's misgivings about whether Detroit was cosmopolitan enough for her and her big league husband? We hope so, because it's pretty damn funny.

Model D readers selected Brad Fitzgerald's "Fun in the City" design as their favorite to adorn the Crowell Rec Center

You helped pick a mural design for Detroit's Crowell Community Center. Now help paint it

Model D recently asked you to help Summer in the City and the Detroit Recreation Department choose a mural design to spruce up the Crowell Community Center in northwest Detroit. Now you can help paint it.

Maurice Cox (right) at the Green Garage

Walkability, historic preservation, and equity priorities for Detroit's new planning director

Last Friday, new Detroit planning director Maurice Cox gave a talk at the weekly community lunch at the Green Garage in Midtown. Here are a few highlights.

Detroit Grease's new location at Recycle Here!

Detroit Grease moves from Ann Arbor to Detroit to grow waste oil conversion business

Detroit Grease collects waste oil that is turned into either biodiesel fuel or feedstock. The company recently moved from Ann Arbor to Detroit's Recycle Here! complex.

Sarah LeSage

What We've Lost: The community impact of invasive species

Invasive species are costly to Michigan cities and their residents, negatively affecting everyone's quality of life. Here's some of what we've lost to invasive species and how we can prevent future invasives from causing similar damage.

Annette May, founder of Know Beer

So you think you know beer?

Just because you hang out at HopCat and have been to every brewery in metro Detroit doesn't make you a beer expert. But taking a class by Know Beer will.

Doug McIntosh

10 Years of Change: Remembering Doug McIntosh, Detroit architect and preservation advocate

Doug McIntosh was president of Preservation Wayne (now Preservation Detroit), an early supporter of Model D, a community leader, and a mentor to many. He had a vision for the city.

Greg Baise in Peoples Records on Gratiot

The three quiet kings of Detroit's music scene

A conversation with Greg Baise, Joel Peterson, and Adriel Thornton, three Detroit promoters of underground and (slightly) above ground cultural events from the early 1990s to the present.

Linda Smith, director of U-SNAP-Bac

The evolution of community development in Detroit: Three leaders talk about their work.

Many of Detroit's community development corporations, or CDCs, find themselves operating in different conditions today than when they were founded. Model D spoke with the leaders of three longstanding CDCs in different parts of the city to see how their work is evolving.

An ore carrier pushes into Marquette.

Michiganders have a voice when it comes to the protection and strategy regarding the state's water

What does Michigan's water mean to us? Everything. You can meet up with the Office of the Great Lakes' director and staff in your city to have your comments, questions and concerns heard and answered. 

One of seven murals proposed for the Crowell Community Center

Help choose a mural for the Crowell Community Center in northwest Detroit

Help Summer in the City choose from seven designs for a mural that will decorate the Crowell Community Center in northwest Detroit.

Hitsville U.S.A., home of the Motown Museum

Hitsville vs. Soulsville: How Detroit and Memphis are embracing their soul music heritage

There were two rival labels – and two cities – that defined soul music in the public consciousness. Arguing Hitsville (Detroit) vs. Soulsville (Memphis) is like arguing Beatles vs. Stones. But how do these two cities stack up when it comes to preserving and embracing their soul music heritage?

A cyclist on the Dequindre Cut

10 Years of Change: The evolution of Detroit's non-motorized transportation network

In just a decade, Detroit has grown from a city lacking non-motorized transportation options to one with a growing infrastructure for cycling and walking and a nascent bike culture.

Stretch Adam and Ken Witzgall

New rooms and fresh faces are driving a stand-up comedy revival in Detroit

Detroiters take our city seriously, but we're also funny as f#%k. Want proof? Check out the awesome stand-up comics working new rooms across Detroit.

The West Canfield Historic District

How one woman gave rise to Detroit's historic preservation movement

Beuhlah Croxford is a name unfamiliar to most Detroiters, yet her legacy as an advocate of historic preservation is visible in buildings and neighborhoods across the city.

Girls Rock Detroit

Girls Rock Detroit empowers local girls to get loud

Girls Rock Detroit co-founder Melissa Coppola describes the new summer camp for local girls as "a fusion of activism and feminism and music education."

The Innovation Institute at Henry Ford Hospital

Repurposing historic buildings on Detroit's medical campuses

Two local hospital systems have worked diligently to balance the preservation of the historic character of their campuses with the need to keep their facilities state-of-the-art.

On the Madison Roof

Photos: Looking back on the Forward Cities Detroit convening

Last month, Forward Cities, a national learning collaborative among four cities undergoing transformation, held a convening in Detroit. 

Kevin Bingham stands next to a healthy ash tree in front of his home

13 years after emerald ash borer's arrival, metro Detroit communities embrace tree diversity

The emerald ash borer arrived in Michigan in 2002, and it quickly wreaked havoc on metro Detroit's urban canopy. Thirteen years later, local communities are embracing tree diversity to make up for the losses caused by this invasive species.

Using perch for bait along Fox Creek at Mariner's Park, this group of fishermen meet every Saturday in summer. Across the creek and behind the fence is Grosse Pointe Park.

Life on the Border: Blurring the lines that separate Detroit and Grosse Pointe Park

Race and class collide along the stark border separating Detroit and Grosse Pointe Park. Can these two communities come together as neighbors?

Urban Innovation

Power to the people: New series to spotlight urban innovators

What do you think of when you hear the words "urban innovation"? Do you think of smart technology and clean energy? Or open data and civic tech? Maybe you think of entrepreneurship or creative placemaking or the future of mobility? It's easy to forget, but all of these have one thing in common: people.

Greater Lakes

Video: Healing the Great Lakes with green infrastructure

Across the Great Lakes, water resource systems in urban areas have been heavily altered by human development. But a new vision is emerging; one in which cities move from fragmentation to integration, treating water as a single, holistic resource.

The Simms family in front of their home in Morningside

Groups work to preserve affordable housing as development pressures grow in Detroit

As development pressures rise in some Detroit neighborhoods, groups are working to ensure that affordable housing options are preserved for the city's most vulnerable residents.

Abick's Bar in southwest Detroit

What exactly is Detroit's oldest bar, anyway? The answer might surprise you

Stop into any venerable bar in the city and you’re likely to encounter a heated debate over which bar truly is the oldest in Detroit. We set out to put an end to the debate, but it wasn't as simple a task as we thought.

A basketball hoop in Pulaski Park

Despite Detroit's troubled history with parks, some spots shine for youth

While Detroit's park network has significant room for improvement, there are several local parks that stand out as great models of kid-friendly, community-enhancing public spaces.

Preview of "Se7en: The Musical"

How a local indie improv scene is spreading across the city

Six months ago, it would have been nearly impossible to watch improv comedy in the city of Detroit. Now, the problem for fans of improv is choosing which shows to attend.

borderseries-013

Examining the borders that define metro Detroit

As the city of Detroit recovers from bankruptcy, county power dynamics shift, and regional issues like water, sewer, transit, education and energy come to the fore, the borders that circumscribe metropolitan Detroit will impact an array of  important issues affecting us all.

Detroiters buying local at Great Lakes Coffee

So you want to be a localist? Three ways to up your game

Do you believe in the power of small business to restore community? If so, you might be a localist. Here are three simple suggestions for how to contribute to the localist movement in a meaningful, holistic way.

Detroit Riverfront

Four cities come together in Detroit to learn lessons to take home

From June 24-26, over 200 business and community leaders from four cities are gathering in Detroit to discuss how to increase entrepreneurial activity and connectivity in distressed neighborhoods so that the local innovation economy does not leave anyone behind.

Main Library's grand staircase

7 wonders of Detroit Public Library's Main Branch

In honor of the Detroit Public Library's 150th anniversary, explore the wonders of Main Library, many of which are hidden in plain sight.

Larry Bell Owner of Bell's Brewery and Eccentric Cafe.

Michigan-born businesses don't have to wander far from home to find more success

When it comes to expansion and finding continued success, multiple popular Michigan-born businesses decided to keep their operations close to home by expanding right here in the state. 

Matrix Theatre Company’s audition-only Teen Company

Matrix Theatre students create stage art around Detroit experiences

While many children indulge in video games and television when they return home from school, Matrix Theatre students are a different breed. These dedicated students spend their after-school hours – and yes, even their precious weekends – transforming abstract ideas into scripts, running lines, and watching their concepts come alive on stage.

Belle Isle

Yosemite city? The National Parks Service showcases its urban agenda in Detroit

Ask someone in Detroit where they might find the National Park Service (NPS) in Michigan and they are likely to think of Sleeping Bear Dunes or Isle Royale -- not an urban park like Detroit's Belle Isle. Yet the NPS has formed local partnerships to pursue an "urban agenda."

Morgan Willis

Ever-evolving Allied Media Conference, happening this week in Detroit, adds nighttime programming

The Allied Media Conference appeals specifically to the diverse community of people who create media in order to transform lives and incite change – those who are often the very people who get left out of conventional conferences for lack of visibility and access. It takes place June 18-21 in Detroit.

Building Bridges to Small Business

Opinion: Want to make a big impact on Michigan's economy? Think small

Typically, the Mackinac Policy Conference is about big things -- big ideas, big names, and big companies. This year, Rachel Lutz and some Detroit small business colleagues thought it would be fun to bring some small ideas, small names, and small companies to the high-profile gathering.

Future site of Chene Street Grocers

Modest market hopes to serve Poletown with fresh produce and dry goods

For some residents of the near east side neighborhood of Poletown, the image of revitalization looks different than it does in other parts of the city. Instead of discussing how to redevelop land, they are figuring out how to allow it to return to its original prairie state, where its occupants and nature coexist. That's what drew Vanessa Cronin to 5200 Chene St., a property she is transforming into Chene Street Grocers, a market that will sell local produce and dry goods.

Cycling the Windsor riverfront

Freewheeling in Windsor: A short journey to the deep south of Canada

Windsor, Ontario is closer to downtown Detroit than its suburbs, yet so few of us take the time to explore this charming city to our south. Last month, we decided to go there with open minds and virtually no plans to see what we've been missing.

Motor City Pride

Is Detroit on its way to becoming a gay-friendly city?

As our hardscrabble metropolis continues its 21st century evolution, is it finally learning to put its big, strong arms around the diverse and beleaguered LGBT community that calls it home? Signs point to yes.

Students at Cooke Elementary watch the DSO via webcast

DSO webcasts bring classical music to Detroit classrooms

An innovative program of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra provides students with an opportunity to "attend" the orchestra without leaving their desks.

Birth to 3 SR LIST

Changing lives from the very start: Report identifies best measures to help at-risk kids

More than half of Michigan's kids from birth to age 3 are at risk of showing up to kindergarten unprepared to learn. A new report outlines measures with the most evidence of success and highest return on investment to help them.

10 Years of Change

Celebrating 10 years of Model D with a new series, '10 Years of Change'

As Model D celebrates its 10th birthday, we're pleased to announce "10 Years of Change," a year-long series of stories and events that will both look back on the transformations that have occurred in Detroit over the last decade and look forward to those to come.

A science class at the Michigan Science Center

STEM education opens doors to a variety of career paths, regional success

A vice president of the largest independent electricity transmission company in the U.S. writes that we can maintain southeast Michigan's reputation as an innovative and desirable location for companies looking to expand as well as set our kids up for success by focusing on STEM-related topics in schools.

The Detroit Children's Choir

Detroit Children's Choir brings together diverse voices from around the region

For several years, Detroit Public Schools has been working to keep arts education programs afloat amidst statewide budget cuts. In our Partners in Arts series, Model D and InspirED Michigan are exploring how partnerships with nonprofits throughout Detroit are ensuring DPS students have access to the arts and are experiencing the impact of music, dance, theater and more in their lives.

reach-influence-008

How metro Detroit cities are staying relevant in 'live, work, play' era of office space

As downtown Detroit's office space attracts growing companies with lifestyle amenities, can suburban communities keep up?

What if Movement took over I-375?

What if the movement to reimagine I-375 included Movement?

As Detroit considers permanently transforming I-375, what if we temporarily shut down the freeway and experienced it at the human scale? What if Movement grew into 375 next year? Can you feel it?

John Collins (left) and Cornelius Harris of Underground Resistance get the ball rolling

'Keep Detroit weird' and other takeaways from second Detroit-Berlin Connection conference

The second-annual Detroit-Berlin Connection conference began by redefining what "techno" is and ended with a declaration that "we must keep Detroit weird."

Headwrap Expo

Faith, fashion, and the art of head-wrapping on display at multicultural expo in Dearborn

The exotic head wrap is once again having a fashion moment. Nowhere was this more visible than at the Headwrap Expo, an event that celebrated the art of head-wrapping last weekend in Dearborn.

Henry Ford Hospital

Anchor institutions drive demand for housing in greater downtown area

Employees of anchor institutions like Henry Ford Health System and Wayne State University are driving demand for housing the greater downtown area. The institutions themselves are responding with purposeful investment in housing and neighborhood infrastructure.

Movement Electronic Music Festival in Hart Plaza

Your guide to Movement 2015

Is this really the 16th edition of Detroit's Memorial Day weekend techno festival? Time flies when you're having too much fun. This year's Movement Electronic Music Festival is bigger and better than ever, spanning three days and six stages.

A freeway reimagined

Getting creative about freeway removal: If Portland can do it, why can't Detroit?

Last week, we kicked off a three-part series asking Detroiters to imagine a new future for I-375, America's shortest (and arguably silliest) Interstate. For part two of the series, we present you with transportation projects from around the world where a community's collective desire for well-designed and healthy urban environments lead to creative transformations of freeways.

Ariel Adkins

For Detroit families who can't get their kids to preschool, HIPPY program brings preschool to them

For 23 years, the national Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) program has been working to help children and families access early childhood education in their own homes. Here in Detroit, Neighborhood Services Organization provides the program to families on the east and west sides of the city.

Hacienda Mexican Foods

Building a community-based company, Hacienda Mexican Foods in southwest Detroit

Today, Hacienda Mexican Foods is a multi-million-dollar business that employs 60 people and just signed a partnership with Meijer to make flour tortillas, corn tortillas, and tortilla chips.  

Waiel Shalall, Rocky Hanosh, and Lahib Shallal at Ali Baba

One block in Hamtramck: A little bit of everything on Caniff

From live music to chai tea to Middle Eastern cuisine, one block of Caniff in Hamtramck has got it all.

Can Detroiters imagine more creative uses for I-375 than those currently proposed?

Reimagining America's silliest Interstate: Introducing a series on the future of I-375

Can Detroiters imagine more creative uses for I-375 than those currently proposed? Model D begins a series of three features that dare to dream big about the transformation of America's least useful freeway.

Cricket lesson and match on Carpenter Street

The Porous Borders Festival to bring attention to Hamtramck's boundaries through art and activity

From May 16-19, over 50 performances and events will take place along Hamtramck's borders with Detroit and Highland Park as a part of the Porous Borders Festival. "The idea is to make the border visible with art and activity that brings neighbors together," says organizer Liza Bielby.

The panel at MakerLab 2015

Specialized skills and knowledge sharing are hallmarks of emerging local 'maker movement'

In a city that has experienced a decades-long decline in manufacturing jobs, a class of specialized laborer and craftsperson -- the so-called "maker" -- has seen a modest revival.

Le Rouge's Zeke Harris with supporters

7 reasons to get excited about Detroit City FC's 2015 season

Le Rouge of Detroit City FC have come to be known for two things: winning and having one of the most exciting fan environments in southeast Michigan. As the club embarks on its fourth season, here are seven reasons why you should get excited for DCFC soccer this summer.

A Goodwells pocket sandwich

A quiet leader in Detroit's food renaissance, Goodwells Market provides a model for success

As more chain stores make their way to rebounding Detroit, smaller businesses may feel the pinch. Even more pressing is how black-owned businesses in Detroit, such as Goodwells, will fare as the city moves forward.

Fresh Dutch Girl donuts

Since 1947, Dutch Girl Donuts has proven a rare constant in a changing city

Dutch Girl Donuts, located on Woodward Avenue just south of 7 Mile Road, has proven a rare constant in a changing city. The shop has been serving up fresh donuts at fair prices since 1947, and it has no plans on changing.

Kids at the Michigan Science Center

Detroit STEM programs launch local youth into science, tech careers

Michigan will need to fill an estimated 274,000 STEM-related positions by 2018. While the state is struggling to produce workers qualified to take those jobs, a handful of programs are helping fill the gaps and giving motivated local students a leg up in the world of STEM.

Fisher Body 21 - Detroit Berlin Connection

The Detroit Berlin Connection to host its second conference on May 20

The program, which takes place from 4 until 8 p.m., will include presentations by individuals and organizations involved in art, music, design, innovation, and entrepreneurial efforts in both Detroit and Berlin. Panel discussions and a Q&A session will follow, along with a cocktail hour afterglow where the public can mingle with the speakers.

Keishanna Jenkins and Ralph Taylor

Ralph Taylor and Caribbean Mardi Gras Productions

Ralph Taylor is the owner of Caribbean Mardi Gras Productions, designing elaborate, meticuliusly-detailed Trinidadian Carnival-styled costumes for balls and parades all over the world. 

Clement Brown, Jr.

Clement Brown, Jr. and the FAME Shop

Clement Brown, Jr. is the owner of FAME Shop, a community impact workshop that offers personal branding courses in the areas of fashion, art, music, and entertainment.

Stacey Burdette

Kalamazoo women get a place of their own to hack away

Creativity has a new home in Kalamazoo. Hacker Gals founder Stacy Burdette discusses what's happening at Kalamzoo's newest makerspace.

Smith Shop

Ponyride, more than just a makerspace

Using an "all boats rise with the tide" rent subsidy, Ponyride is able to provide cheap space for socially-conscious artists and entrepreneurs to work and share knowledge, resources, and networks.

raingarden

Healing fractured water: Great Lakes cities look to reintegrate the urban water cycle

Urban Great Lakes water systems are disconnected from the natural environment, but cities are looking to reintegrate them using green infrastructure and integrated management approaches.

Alvaro and Mr. Padilla, Nacimiento Restaurant

With change afoot in Southwest Detroit, can residents steer development?

Like much of the city, Southwest Detroit is experiencing rapid change. In a 20-block section, however, residents are helping guide the transformation.

Clark Park

How programming in Clark Park is turning neighborhood kids into engaged citizens

At Clark Park, sports leagues, summer camps, senior activities, and children's story hour, among many other activities, draw people of all ages and create opportunities for people to meet across generational and neighborhood lines.

O.N.E. Mile

O.N.E. Mile project hopes to bring new model of revitalization to Detroit's North End

In sharing the legacy of the North End, organizers hope the O.N.E. Mile Project inspires other communities in Detroit to share their legacies on their own terms.

Point Pelee Marsh by Andrea from Leamington, Ontario , Canada - CC BY

Daytripping from metro Detroit: Five amazing destinations less than a tank of gas away

What's a wanderlusty Detroiter to do this time of year, when mid-winter voyages feel forever ago, but summer vacations still lie months ahead? Time to pencil in a day trip—somewhere you've never been to or perhaps never even heard of.

A Model D speaker series event

Join us May 7 for MakerLab, a Model D speaker series event

On May 7, Model D is teaming up with The Henry Ford to bring you MakerLab, a series of live presentations by Detroit makers where they will discuss their craft and the city's growing maker culture.

Industry on the Detroit River

A look at how climate change will affect Detroit neighborhoods

By the end of the century, Detroit's climate could be more like that of southern Missouri today. Here's a look at the challenges climate change poses to Detroit and the neighborhoods most at risk.

Jackie Bejma, executive director of LAND, Inc.

From bioswales to pennycress: How Detroit neighborhoods are going from gray to green

In Detroit, aging "gray" infrastructure poses challenges to the environment, but plenty of opportunity exists to develop green infrastructure that can heal it.

Ronier Golightly, owner of Motor City Popcorn

Starting a food business In Detroit? These programs could make all the difference

While startups encounter many stumbling blocks, local food entrepreneurs have a lot to be thankful for; Detroit is chock-full of resources to help new and growing food businesses.

UHF-005

Your guide to Record Store Day in metro Detroit

Metro Detroit is home to some fantastic record stores. Here's a rundown of a few of our favorites. Check them out on Saturday, April 18 for Record Store Day, then keep going back.

They've got soul at Peoples Records

Your guide to Record Store Day in Detroit and Hamtramck

In advance of Record Store Day 2015 (happening Saturday, April 18) here is a guide to some of our favorite record stores in the cities of Detroit and Hamtramck.

Car show 3

Annual car show gives Detroit School of Arts students a showcase for their talents

On April 23-24, Detroit School of Arts students will present more than a dozen vintage cars volunteered by their owners, along with a fashion show, musical performances, workshops, and a student art exhibition and auction all related to the cars on display.

Detroit pedestrians

New data from Walk Score suggest Detroit's walkability is on the rise

Walk Score just released its rankings of America's most walkable cities. The list contained good news for Motor City pedestrians: Detroit's Walk Score is up 2.2 points since 2011.

SMART bus

Will metro Detroit suburbs buy into regional transit?

In the wake of the story of megacommuter James Robertson, some metro Detroit communities are reconsidering their stance when it comes to regional transit.

Detroit schoolkids

Why you should pay attention to a new coalition's recommendations for education in Detroit

Last week, the Coalition for the Future of Detroit Schoolchildren issued a report that all who care about the city should pay attention to, whether they have children or not.

A discussion at Bamboo Detroit

Join us April 16 for "Scaling up in the Food Industry," a Model D speaker series event

On Thursday, April 16, join Model D and Southeast Michigan Startup at Bamboo Detroit for a special panel event where local food entrepreneurs will discuss their experiences growing businesses in the region.

A scene from Oren Goldenberg's "A Requiem for Douglass" installation

Your guide to Art X Detroit

Art X is a celebration featuring 50 free arts events over three weekends in April. Here are a few highlights from this year's schedule.

Curt Bailey

An artist's argument for STEAM education

It would be a shame if kids with a passion for art were somehow led to believe that there is not a place for them in the world of science, technology, and innovation, argues designer and inventor Curt Bailey, which is why he believes it important to insert an 'A' for arts into the STEM acronym.

Detroit Youth Volume students

Detroit Youth Volume inspires east side kids with no-cost violin lessons

The only program in the city to offer violin no-cost lessons using a special training known as the Suzuki Method, Detroit Youth Volume has an innovative ethic that inspires kids from low-income families.

Tod Machover

Tod Machover to capture sounds of the city with 'Symphony in D' project

"This is a place where the past, present and future are all mixed up," says Machover. "There are ghosts here, audio artifacts everywhere, rhythms that are alive. Nowhere I've been is really like Detroit."

McClure's Pickles

Welcome to the Year of the Gazelle, a series looking at metro Detroit's fastest growing companies

Over the next year, we will identify the fastest-growing local companies and tell you the behind-the-scenes stories of the entrepreneurs, investors, and the resources that are building Michigan's new economy.

Ramone Horst next to a bridgeport machine at Focus:HOPE

For metro Detroit families, financial literacy can be the difference between poverty and stability

For the working poor, it's not enough to be employed. An innovative program is helping people reach financial stability by learning how to manage their money.

Radio Campfire's audience at a recent event in Ann Arbor

Radio Campfire, a new audio storytelling series, to sound off at Detroit's Matrix Theatre

Local audiophiles and podcast fans will be pleased to hear that a new audio storytelling series is being produced here in Southeast Michigan. The first Detroit Radio Campfire event is happening Friday, March 27 at the Matrix Theatre in Southwest Detroit.

Geoff George

Opinion: Film incentives are good business for Detroit and Michigan

With the future of Michigan's film tax incentives in question, Detroit cinematographer Geoff George makes the case for why we can't afford to give up on them yet.

Officer J Washington II fastens a bridle on Big Babby for their University District patrol

The Mounted Police Division, the most versatile unit of the Detroit Police Department

For 120 years, officers of the Detroit Mounted Police Division have patrolled neighborhoods throughout the city, interacting with citizens and building positive relationships between the community and the police department.

Workers trim brisket at United Meat and Deli

The corned beef effect: How St. Patrick's Day drives the local food economy

A pair of family-run Detroit businesses have grown into major producers of corned beef, supplying markets throughout the country with their specialty products. They've spent months gearing up for St. Patrick's Day.

Detroit blues musicians

13 ways Detroit can assert itself as a music capital

Detroit's musical legacy is indisputable. Its future as a music capital, however, is uncertain. Here are 13 ways the city can help cement its legacy for decades to come.

Detroit Experience Factory's new welcome center

The Detroit Experience Series kicks off with "Green Detroit" tour on April 25

Model D and the Detroit Experience Factory are pleased to announce a collaboration that will help readers visit the neighborhoods, small businesses, and people they read about in Model D. The collaboration begins with a tour of "Green Detroit" happening Saturday, April 25.

Wayne Ramocan plays drums in Turkmenistan

Exporting culture, importing experience: The benefits of taking Detroit musicians abroad

Music is one of Detroit's greatest exports. Wayne Ramocan, a Detroit musician and community activist, argues that we need to help expose our young musicians to the wider world and make an effort to retain their talent in the city.

Corrado Parducci

Corrado Parducci, the great (and mostly forgotten) architectural artist of Detroit

Parducci was an Italian-American immigrant who came to Detroit via New York in 1925. An architectural sculptor, he would complete over 600 commissions in his 60-year career, many of them a part of Detroit's most iconic buildings. 

Participatory mapping at a CDAD meeting

The new geographers: How Detroiters are mapping a better future for the city

Cartography is alive and well in Detroit. Model D sat down with several local map enthusiasts to learn about where they draw inspiration for their work and where they see it heading in an open data context.

Youth Transit Alliance

Youth Transit Alliance needs $97K to keep giving Detroit kids free rides to after school programs

Youth Transit Alliance safely transports kids between their homes in Southwest Detroit and after-school programs throughout the city. The program must raise $97,328 by March 25 in order to keep providing free rides through the end of the school year.

Jim Snyder, owner of Franklin Furniture

Betting on Detroit and beating the odds: Franklin Furniture's survival story

For decades, Franklin Furniture has offered Detroit residents and businesses affordable furnishings. Despite encountering more than his fair share of adversity, Jim Snyder, Franklin's owner, remains bullish on the city.

Co-working List

10 essential networks for Detroit creatives

Whatever role you play in the creative economy, an abundance of local creative networks and resources exists to support you. Here are 10 especially good ones.

Public Pool List

Uncool in all the right ways: Five years of Public Pool, Hamtramck's storefront art space

This Saturday, Hamtramck art space Public Pool is celebrating five years of solo and group shows, music and dance performances, panel discussions, and readings. The anniversary show is called "I Only Want to See You Underneath" and features the work of Public Pool co-founder Tim Hailey.

Your Detroit list

Model D, Skillman Foundation to host #YourDetroit Twitter chat on March 3

The Skillman Foundation and Model D are pleased to facilitate #YourDetroit, a Twitter chat happening Tuesday, March 3 from 2 to 3 p.m. We want to hear from you about where you see yourself in the narratives forming around contemporary Detroit.

Wind-10

Can individuals and communities generate Michigan's electricity in the future?

It's a brave new energy world in Michigan. Coal is on the way out while natural gas, wind and solar are on the way in. But the bigger question is who will generate electricity in the future -- traditional utilities, or individuals and communities?

Alexandrine List

To understand change in Midtown Detroit, look to Alexandrine Street

More than $40 million is being invested in the renovation of buildings -- big and small -- along the three blocks of West Alexandrine between Woodward Avenue and Third Street. It's here where some of the city's newest marquee business have set up shop and where the changing face of Midtown Detroit is most acutely visible.

Dr. T List

What it takes to transform Southeast Michigan into a STEM Hub

Building a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) economy is widely seen as a pathway to prosperity. So what would it take to make Southeast Michigan a STEM Hub? Dr. Tonya Matthews, CEO of the Michigan Science Center, has a few ideas, starting with putting people first.

Assemble List

Opinion: Detroit's leadership must engage emerging leaders and their vision of a new American Dream

Chris Grindem argues that Detroit's leaders must engage with a specific group of Millennials, the city's emerging leaders, and their vision of a new American Dream. Why? Because they are convinced Detroit is in a unique, once-in-a-lifetime position to help define the future of American cities.

listds

Embracing the magical: Q&A with place-based education architect David Sobel

In a culture so consumed by digital devices and virtual experiences, how can the natural world compete for students' attention? We talk with David Sobel, architect of place-based education, to find out.

Die In List

Opinion: Detroit needs to preserve public spaces for assembly and free speech

Detroit's downtown parks long have been places where people exercise their constitutional right to assemble peaceably, but does private management of public spaces now stand in their way?

Produce List

Winter harvest: How local farmers are extending the growing season

Frigid temperatures and snow don't mean you have to rule out eating fresh, regionally-sourced vegetables. Winter food production is alive and thriving in and around Michigan thanks to greenhouse growing and other season-extending technologies.

Paczki list

Making paczki with Sister Pie

In years past, we have provided you with guides to help you celebrate Paczki Day. This year, we decided to get our hands dirty and actually make paczki with 2014 Hatch contest winners, Sister Pie.

Fellows List

How Motor City Mapping became a template for citywide collaboration

The Motor City Mapping project captured vital information on the condition of each of Detroit's 375,000+ parcels. It may have also created a template for citywide collaboration.

Chefs List

How four young chefs ignited Detroit's restaurant renaissance

In three short years, four young chefs have gone from "almost famous" to big-time celebrities in the local and national culinary scenes.

Corktown Mkt List

Coming in May, the Corktown Farmers Market will feature produce grown in the neighborhood

Located on a strip of land along Michigan Avenue between the Lodge Service Drive and the Detroit Institute of Bagels, the new market will be open Thursdays, 3-7 p.m., from May through October.

ROBOCOP! The Musical

"RoboCop! The Musical" to take Delta City (aka Detroit) by storm on Feb. 19

It's a matter of debate as to whether Detroit is ready for a public monument to RoboCop, but we can all agree that the city needs "RoboCop! The Musical," which begins a nine show run at the City Theatre on Feb. 19.

Henry Ford in his first concept car, the Quadricycle

Can Detroit re-revolutionize the auto industry, or is Elon Musk beating us to it?

You'd think it was 1893 all over again, when a veritable 'mobility startup scene' was heating up all over the country. But is Detroit missing out on the action this time?

Dilla List

Dilla Youth Day to celebrate legendary producer, empower local kids on Feb. 8 at Wright Museum

Dilla Youth Day, A celebration of legendary Detroit producer J Dilla and a workshop for local kids interested in music, will take place Feb. 8, 1-8 p.m. at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History.

Rubello List

Remembering 'Color Cubes,' downtown Detroit's lost public art landmark

Last Spring, an iconic piece of public art in downtown Detroit was painted over to make room for a temporary 7-11 ad. The sudden loss lead Matthew Piper to dig deep into the history of "Color Cubes" by David Rubello, which is gone but not forgotten.

Imad List

From prisoner in Iraq to store owner in Detroit: Imad Morad's long journey to entrepreneurship

Once a prisoner of Al Qaeda with little hope of survival, Imad Agh Morad has made a new life as an entrepreneur in Detroit.

Power List

Powering the Mitten: How does electricity get to your smartphone?

You plug in your smartphone and voila -- it's charged up and ready to whisk you off to cyberspace. But how exactly do those electrons get into your phone? Read on to find out.

Local Food List

Detroit restaurants and farmers are working together to expand options for locavores

As Detroit restaurants become more dedicated to sourcing locally and Detroit farmers work harder to meet demand, the locavore's dining options are expanding.

fellows list

After two-year fellowship, dedication to improving the city keeps three fellows in Detroit

Three members of the Detroit Revitalization Fellows inaugural cohort are committed to continuing their work to improve the city well beyond their fellowship term.

Facade list

Businesses put best face forward with help of local façade improvement programs

A building's visual order can have an inordinate impact on a community, which is why a number of area community development organizations have used façade improvement programs to battle blight and spur neighborhood economic development.

Land Forum List

Opinion: It's time to demystify the process of acquiring land in the city of Detroit

To help inform Detroiters looking to acquire vacant land, The Greening of Detroit, Michigan Community Resources, and the Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights have collaborated in developing a series of workshops called "Land Forum."

FellowsLIst

Fellowship helps Detroiters find their way home

They say you can't go home again, but three Detroit Revitalization Fellows have used their fellowship to get back to Michigan and do meaningful work in the city.

SOUP List

Detroit SOUP to celebrate fifth anniversary with party and fundraiser at Ford Field

Since 2010, Detroit SOUP has hosted 90 dinners and awarded over $85,000 to Detroiters with ideas to improve their communities. On Feb. 15, SOUP celebrates its fifth anniversary with a party and fundraiser at Ford Field.

power lines list

How 'smart' is Michigan's electrical grid?

You may have a smart meter on your house, but what's so "smart" about it? We explore Michigan's foray into the "smart grid" and how it affects you.

Pashon Murray

Discuss social entrepreneurship in Detroit at Jan. 19 Open City event

Engage with a panel of social entrepreneurs working in Detroit on Monday, Jan. 19 at "Be the Change," the first Open City event of 2015.

Curtis List

Nicole Curtis, host of HGTV's Rehab Addict, invests again in Detroit for new season

The sixth season of Rehab Addict premieres Jan. 8 and will feature Nicole Curtis's latest Detroit project, a house on East Grand Boulevard near Belle Isle on the city's east side.

mmlist

Powering the Mitten: Report warns of looming electricity capacity shortfall

Michigan may be facing electric generation capacity shortfalls as soon as 2016, according to a new report. What does that mean for the state and how can it be avoided?

John's Carpet House List

Five things to look forward to in 2015

Last year was a big one for the city of Detroit. Looking forward to 2015, here are five things we're excited about.

Detroit Innovation List

Video: Looking back on three years of Detroit innovation

For the past three years, our partners at Urban Innovation Exchange have been following hundreds of small projects making a big impact in Detroit. In this video, Detroit Lives! captures the essence of that work.

abick's list

Abick's Bar, a neighborhood institution for more than a century

Detroit's oldest continuously family-operated bar is mourning the loss of its matriarch, Manya Soviak, but a new generation of the family is leading the neighborhood institution into its second century of existence.

Philly residents and police working together

Police-community partnerships offer way to improve neighborhood safety

Dozens of communities across the U.S. have formed effective, ongoing partnerships with the police departments that have improved safety and trust between residents and officers.

powermixlist

Powering the Mitten: What mix of fuel will power Michigan's future?

Electricity in Michigan comes mostly from coal and nuclear power, but that's set to change in the next decade. DTE Energy's Nick Khouri talks about how the utility is planning for the change.

Deconstruction List

As they wait for contracts, local organizations prepare workers for deconstruction jobs

While demolition will make up the lion's share of the city's blight elimination efforts, Mayor Duggan and the Detroit Blight Authority are pushing to ensure that deconstruction also plays a role. Area training centers hope to prepare students for careers in both demolition and deconstruction.

schools list

How local real estate developers are giving new life to some of Detroit's shuttered schools

Some Detroit developers are finding opportunity -- and potential profits -- in the adaptive reuse of shuttered schools.

Fellows List

The Detroit hustle: When love for the city goes beyond the 9-to-5

Plenty of people work to better Detroit at their day jobs, but some don't call it quits at 5 p.m. A pair of Detroit Revitalization Fellows finds fulfillment both at work and while moonlighting as a distillery owner and a hip hop artist respectively.

campusmartius

Lighting up Detroit: Holiday displays, new infrastructure projects illuminating the city

As Detroit emerges from the darkness of bankruptcy, we say "let there light!" this holiday season. Here's a backstage tour of lighting in Detroit, from schools to streetlights to the Christmas tree at Campus Martius.

Dimitri List

'More than just a place for a party,' Berliner Dimitri Hegemann sees Detroit as place for new ideas

"I see the club as more than just a place for a party. I want the music to stimulate discussion and new ideas," says Hegemann, who was recently in Detroit to discuss the potential of bringing new cultural spaces to the city.

Pryors List

Detroit's first family of the arts: Dell and Sharon Pryor

Tulani Rose and the Dell Pryor Gallery are anchors of the corner of Willis Street and Cass Avenue in Midtown. These institutions are the creations of the mother-daughter team of Dell and Sharon Pryor, Detroit's first family of the arts.

Story Club South Side in Chicago

The art of ordinary life: Why storytelling nights are suddenly everywhere

In our hyperconnected, digital age, people hunger for real stories. In Cleveland and across the country, storytelling nights are growing thanks to the popularity of The Moth, This American Life, and other programs that elevate life into art.

Avenue of Fashion List

On the Avenue of Fashion, small businesses are driving the revival of a neighborhood retail district

A historic neighborhood business district is re-emerging thanks to the dedication and energy of new business owners.

fractured

Fractured Water: Can metro Detroit reconnect its watersheds?

In metro Detroit, our waterways do not function as a whole. A new series delves into why that is and what we can do about it. 

City Bird List

Model D's guide to shopping local this holiday season

Thanks to this handy guide, you have no excuse not to do all of your holiday shopping in Detroit this year.

Noel List

Stop by Model D House during Noel Night on Dec. 6

On Saturday, Dec. 6, Midtown Detroit will be humming with activitiy during the 42nd annual Noel Night holiday celebration. Be sure to stop by Model D House (4470 Second Ave.) for snacks and music.

Bookstore List

Holiday season brings good tidings of new Detroit bookstores

Booklovers in Detroit are about to get three new shops where they can scratch their literary itch: Silva Rerum, Pages on Livernois, and Bookspace Detroit.

Pingree List

Detroit Public Library unveils remarkable digital collections

Now you can explore some of the greatest treasures of the Detroit Public Library from the comforts of home thanks to a digitization project that was years in the making.

Literary Tour List

A literary tour of Detroit

Detroit may be best known for cars and music, but the Motor City has a rich literary history that's worthy of exploration. From Broadside Press to Pulitzer Prize-winning authors to U.S. Poet Laureates, Detroit has produced an extraordinary body of work.

Deconstruction List

Can deconstruction of vacant homes help grow Detroit's economy? Some local businesses hope so

Detroit has 40,000 vacant homes on the path to demolition. Can they be transformed from liabilities into assets through deconstruction? Local businesses' demand for reclaimed materials suggests they can.

factorylist

Powering the Mitten: Manufacturing, electricity and Michigan's future

Michigan's manufacturing economy is on the rebound just as its energy future is in flux. How can the Mitten state maintain a strong manufacturing base while transitioning to cleaner energy?

BerlinList

Berliner Dimitri Hegemann to discuss plans for Fisher Body 21 at community talk on Nov. 29

Hegemann, a Berlin entrepreneur who has played an important role during over two decades of revitalization and reinvention in that city, will be back in Detroit on Nov. 29 to talk about how strategies from Berlin can be used to catalyze growth in Detroit's creative economy.

NEIdeas List

NEIdeas $10K People's Choice awards to be announced at Dec. 11 Detroit SOUP event

After awarding 30 existing businesses in Detroit, Hamtramck, and Highland Park $10K each for their ideas for growth, the NEIdeas challenge is back with a People's Choice round of voting.