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193 New Center Articles | Page: | Show All

Freep: Check out updated map of M-1 Rail line

OK, here it, the latest graphic for the M-1 route, set to break ground this spring. The Freep published a map. Check it out.

An excerpt:

Naming rights for the urban rail line -- like in Cleveland and other cities -- could bring $1 million or more to help pay for the line, slated to run 3 miles along Woodward from Jefferson Avenue downtown to Grand Boulevard in New Center.

More here.

Cleveland transit holds lessons for Detroit's M-1

With work on the Woodward Corridor's M-1 rail set to begin soon, the Freep's John Gallagher writes about how a not dissimilar rail line in Cleveland has worked out.

An excerpt:

Cleveland’s HealthLine shows that detailed planning can pay off. The city created new zoning rules requiring developers building along the route to build their projects right up to the sidewalk with parking behind the building to avoid the look of suburban strip malls. The city’s Regional Transit Authority even commissioned more than 100 new trash bins with a snappy design for the route. Playing off the hybrid design of the bus rapid transit vehicles, which run on tires like buses but use dedicated lanes like a train, the HealthLine’s slogan is "It’s not a bus. It’s not a train. It’s the future."

Read more here.

NCB Capital Impact and Kresge Foundation launch Innovative Woodward Corridor Investment Fund

 NCB Capital Impact and The Kresge Foundation are launching the Woodward Corridor Investment Fund, developed to invest in transformative real estate projects that advance the physical redevelopment of Detroit’s Woodward Corridor.  

With the support of MetLife, Inc., PNC Bank, Prudential, Calvert Foundation, Living Cities, and the Max M. & Marjorie S. Fisher Foundation, the Fund will provide capital to projects that are mixed-use, mixed income, transit-oriented and promote density, diversity, vibrancy, and walkability in Detroit’s core.

The $30.25 million Woodward Corridor Investment Fund is designed to support Detroit’s revitalization by financing critically needed housing units along Woodward Avenue, a main artery and home to major medical and academic campuses and arts and entertainment venues. The Woodward Corridor includes Detroit’s Midtown neighborhood, where occupancy rates exceed 95 percent and demand is high for hundreds of additional units. By focusing on the Woodward Corridor, home to many of Detroit’s largest institutions and employers, the fund will help attract residents and commercial activity, establish a model sustainable corridor, and expand economic opportunity for all residents.

The Fund will provide long-term fixed rate loans under terms not currently available through traditional financial institutions, allowing a single loan source rather than the many layers of capital that can be time consuming and difficult to assemble. This will allow developers to commence construction on their projects more quickly. 

PNC’s capital was also pivotal to catalyzing the fund as it demonstrated how a local Detroit bank’s finances leveraged funding from other national partners.

 The Fund will begin accepting applications Oct. 1. It will make initial loan approvals before the end of 2013 for projects that will start construction prior to the end of 2014. More information is available here.


What's happening at Detroit Design Festival?

Those of you going to tonight's DDF opening party at the A. Alfred Taubman Center for Design Education no doubt know the answer to what's up from now until Sunday, Sept. 22, when six days of intense creativity and innovation in design comes to a close.

But not everyone knows. So here is your portal to the happenings for the week, including a design dash, a Mies van der Rohe walk in Lafayette Park, a John Cage show at the College for Creative Studies' Center Galleries, the grand opening of the Untitled Bottega and other super cool events.

Check it all out here.

Atlantic Cities: Detroit, new American design capital?

This is rather flattering. Steven Heller, co-chair of the MFA Design program at the School of Visual Arts and co-founder of the MFA Design Criticism program at the NYC school, recently visited Detroit.

Here's what he had to say in Atlantic Cities: 

I was blown away by this surprisingly little known but inspiring incubator of art and design - the rare collegiate creative enclave that engages with, reflects, and embodies the city it's in.

That city is, of course, a poster child for urban blight and urban flight. But it's also the storied home of American manufacturing and industrial innovation, and with the help of College for Creative Studies, it could well become the design capital of the United States again.

Awfully nice of you, Steven. Read on here.

Feds give final approval to 3.3-mile M-1 rail

On Monday, the 3.3-mile circulating streetcar along Woodward Avenue received clearance to proceed from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). Also, M-1 Rail President and CEO Matthew P. Cullen welcomed eight new members to the nonprofit’s board of directors and introduced Jeni Norman as Chief Financial Officer.
 
The FTA has completed the environmental clearance for the Woodward Avenue Streetcar Project. With the issuance of the Amended Record of Decision (ROD), the project is allowed to move forward to the next phases of design, right of way acquisition and construction. This is the last approval step under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process. 

Now that the process for approval of the Amended ROD has been completed, the M-1 Rail organization continues to strengthen its team with the hiring of a chief financial officer and by electing eight new members to its board of directors. These announcements come about two weeks after hiring a chief administrative officer and director of governmental & community affairs.

Video: CCS partners with Shinola on design project

We've been marveling at how quickly Shinola has captured the imagination of the Detroit public. The College for Creative Studies has been doing more than that. The art and design school is partnering with the watch and bicyle maker on a research project. 

An excerpt:

Research projects are highly conceptual and allow students the opportunity to participate in creative, research-based assignments within real-world design parameters. Our corporate partners commit design and technical staff to students by providing guidance, expertise and feedback. Organizations financially sponsor conceptual design projects for CCS students and encourage inventive and unique design concepts. The corporate sponsors typically work with teams of CCS undergraduate juniors and seniors or graduate students and are supervised by CCS faculty to pursue new directions in design for their products. CCS’ corporate partners are continuing to expand and diversify their relationships with the College. 

Read more about it here.

Richard Florida reacts to 7.2 greater downtown study

In a piece last week in Atlantic Cities, Richard Florida tackles the recently released 7.2 study that shows greater downtown to be better educated and more diverse than the city at large. There is much complexity to this finding, such that we plan on following what it all means in a variety of ways in the near future.

Here's an excerpt from Florida's story:

The Greater Downtown corridor has a population of 36,550 people or 5,076 people per square mile. It might not be not downtown Manhattan, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, or Philadelphia, but it compares favorably to other Midwest city-centers, like downtown Minneapolis, with 3.4 square miles and 28,811 people; downtown Pittsburgh at 1.3 square miles and 4,064 people; and downtown Cleveland at 3.2 square miles and 9,523 people. Of these downtowns, only Minneapolis has greater density than Greater Downtown Detroit.

Read more here.

Study: Greater downtown growing in wealth, diversity

A report published today and to be shared with investors, developers and city planners, found that greater downtown residents are wealthier than Detroiters at large, but less affluent than the average for the full populations of cities such as Minneapolis and Pittsburgh, which some see as prime examples of successful urban rebirth.

John Gallagher of the Freep has the scoop. An excerpt:

(Data Driven Detroit's Kurt) Metzger pointed out that things are changing so rapidly in the areas that the report may already be slightly dated. For example, gains from the Live Downtown and Live Midtown incentive programs that have bought hundreds of new residents who work for participating businesses into the area in the last two years are not fully captured in this report.

Read the rest of the story (and the full reporthere.



Gilbert thinking retail ahead of M-1 dig

Our favorite extravagant but hardly reckless spender Dan Gilbert is ahead of the pack again, hinting that once the M-1 is fully developed (by 2016) more Woodward corridor retail will be waiting for it.

Excerpt from the Detroit News:

And Gilbert, one of downtown's major employers and private land owners, said his group has "definitely gotten commitments" from retailers who will be ready for business when the M-1 debuts.

"That's the goal as we work behind the scene, versus just taking a rough shot of opening one (retail store) at a time here and there," Gilbert said. He would not specify which retailers have made commitments.

Since August 2010, Gilbert's portfolio of companies has moved 7,000 workers downtown.

Rock Ventures owns 15 properties and is working on buying its 16th at 1001 Woodward, across the street from Campus Martius and Quicken Loans' headquarters in the Compuware Building.

For more, go here.

HuffPost gives us first taste of DDF

Yes, we have a lot of coverage of the Detroit Design Festival this week. But too much is never enough when you have a series of happenings this good. Here's one to clip and save from Kate Abbey-Lambertz in HuffPost Detroit.

Start reading here.

Freep: News expected soon on Woodward rail

Take a look at our News item today on developments in the M1 story and also take a peek at this, another report from the Detroit Free Press. An excerpt:

Project supporters were given 60 days to address concerns about the cost of building and operating the $137-million M-1 Rail line from downtown to the New Center area of Detroit -- a 15-minute route with 11 stops. It is a scaled-down version of the original plan to run light rail north to the city limits at 8 Mile.

Read on here.

Nutrition company Savorfull moves into New Center

Here's one that has been on our radar for a while: nutrition company Savorfull, founded by nutritionist and CEO Stacy Goldberg, has moved its headquarters to the New Center One Building in Detroit.

Savorfull is a growing food membership service providing individuals with special dietary needs a sampler box of nutrient-dense, allergen-free food each month to their doorstep. The company’s new space at New Center One allows Savorfull to expedite service to its expanding customer base nationwide. 

To learn more about Savorfull, go here.

DC3 announces second design festival for September

The second annual Detroit Design Festival (DDF), presented by the Detroit Creative Corridor Center (DC3), is coming to Detroit’s Woodward Corridor Sept. 19-23. The festival, which had 85 Design Happenings featuring 300 designers in its first year, connects designers and creative practitioners, exposing them to new markets and consumers. 

We had a ton of fun last year. Read more here and stay tuned for more info closer to the dates. 

Core77 blogger hits Detroit, swoons over people and place

We were trolling for Detroit media love when we chanced upon this beauty of a blog. Not much more introduction needed.

An excerpt:

True to form, DC3 introduced me to Peggy Brennan, co-founder of the Green Garage. The converted Model T showroom serves as a demonstration of down-to-earth sustainability (no pun intended), as well as a business incubator (everyone incubates these days) and an advisor on integrating sustainable practices for any interested member of the community. Brennan and her husband, along with 200 volunteers, spent two years designing how to best renovate the showroom and looked to the Passivhaus for inspiration. With 19-inches of insulation and triple-glazed windows, the Green Garage only costs $300 to heat for a year.

Read the entire travelog here.
193 New Center Articles | Page: | Show All
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