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Young Broke & Beautiful: The new IFC series gets wild in the D

"Young, Broke & Beautiful" -- there's no way a TV show aiming for that demographic could pass up a night in our fair city. This intrepid series from the Independent Film Channel spotlights indie culture and creators across the nation. Their hour-long travelogue on the D makes friends with plenty of our favorite people and places, from the Imagination Station and DJ Kyle Hall to late-night parties and Coneys (natch).


Stuart will pull the Scion into the most beautiful, broken down parking lot in the world. There's no doubt that all these YBB's will know where the dopest, most off the chain, unsanctioned warehouse party is happening, and Stuart will find himself closing down the night, partying with his people.

IFC will rerun the Detroit episode all week, beginning Tuesday at 6 p.m. Find out more about the channel's tour Detroit here.

Ty Cobb's Detroit: A writer journeys back in time

A "genius in spikes." An incorrigible racist. How do we define the memory of the greatest Tiger, Ty Cobb, who passed away 50 years ago this month? Local writer Anna Clark goes back to a shabby duplex on Commonwealth and Willis in Woodbridge, where Cobb and his young family lived. Through the eyes of the home's current owner, and by delving into Cobb's history, Clark attempts to make sense of the man who was, at times, both a legend and a lout. And she manages, through the narrative of Cobb's life, to draw parallels between our memories of the ballplayer and the narratives we seek to create for Detroit.


Ty Cobb can be a cruel man, and at the same time be a misunderstood hero. Detroit can be both a ravaged, bleeding city and an inspired place where creative people are imagining new ways for an urban center to be successful. In fact, that's exactly what is true.

Clark's story is a grand slam. Catch it here.

Live Midtown program inspires new incentives for Quicken Loans' downtown employees

Dan Gilbert's Quicken Loans will join several other major firms in the city to offer incentives urging their employees to live in Detroit, following the success of this year's Live Midtown program. The program will be announced later this summer.

Midtown Detroit Inc. reports 178 employees from the Detroit Medical Center, Henry Ford Hospital and Wayne State University have used the Live Midtown program to rent, buy or fund home improvements in the district since the program launched five months ago.

Gilbert says he plans to move at least 2,000 of his employees to downtown beginning this fall.


Speaking Wednesday to the visiting news media, Gilbert quipped, "Building anything great is messy. A construction site is messy, but when it's done, it's usually something people can be proud of." His often-stated goal is to make downtown the lively core of a revitalized city, or what he calls Detroit 2.0.

"There is just a certain feel" to downtown, he said Wednesday. "There's a certain energy, a certain buzz, a certain closeness to everything, and people really, really are enjoying it."

Read the rest of the story here -- and look for more info on these new residential initiatives in Model D this summer.

Crain's 20-somethings reshape the D's possibilities

One could call the 2011 class of Crain's "20 in their 20s" list up-and-comers, but we here at Model D would argue that they're already here. The list celebrates Metro Detroiters who may not have made a mint, but are giving this region something back through their hard work, dedication and entrepreneurial spirit. A special shout-out goes to our Crain's award winners with bigtime Detroit proper connections; among them Hostel Detroit's Emily Doerr, the Imagination Station's Jerry Paffendorf (who's quoted below), Amy Ruby of the Detroit Derby Girls and Jason Malone, who founded the Midnight Golf Program.


"I think people want opportunities to engage with the city, and they're not offered them," he said. "I think people respond to something like that. ... One of the things we realized with our work, there are many, many things you can do in the world and it's very difficult to get people excited about them. ... You've got to present these things in such a way that they're fun and inviting; not to make light of problems, but there's a way to present things and be open for business that doesn't just focus on the dark parts."

Check the list out here.

What do Detroit and Lodz, Poland have in common? Fund this new film to find out

Detroit isn't the only industrial city challenged with remaking its identity. On the other side of the pond, Polish city Lodz was once the European leader in textile production -- until the fall of the USSR, when the city suffered massive depopulation. Now, Lodz joins Detroit as a city full of empty factories -- and even more potential.

Detroit Lives! wants to talk to urban planners, entrepreneurs and artists from both cities to jump-start the conversation on how former industrial giants can reshape themselves. Their Kickstarter won't fund their plane tickets (they already have those), but it will help pay for things like post-audio engineering, translation services and film festival fees.


We've lined up interviews on both continents with top city officials, best-selling authors, and pioneering artists.  PLUS, the American Film Festival in Poland has already expressed interest in premiering the film (and we haven't even begun shooting)!

Wanna fund, or find out more? Click here.

Detroit tops Travel & Leisure's list of "World's Most Underrated Cities"

Detroit recently topped the list of Travel & Leisure's underdog urban hotspots for travelers weary of cookie-cutter cosmopolitan vacations. The magazine lauded the new breed of "urban homesteader" helping to reshape the city, and referenced a few of our great restaurants (Foran's Grand Trunk Pub, Supino pizza, and Slows) as evidence of the D's growing gastronomic reputation.


And then of course there's Detroit. What most people would consider as evidence of Motor City's sad decline -- empty lots, abandoned houses, and disused factories -- others view as unparalleled opportunities for artists, designers, and other creative types. In fact, Patti Smith and David Byrne, two of music's eternal cool kids, recently exhorted budding artists to move to Detroit, and young people are heeding their advice, moving into neighborhoods like Midtown and Woodbridge.

Check out which other underdog cities made the list here.

The Detroit girl's guide to graffiti

Detroit Girls About Town, a web site that's aimed at keeping Detroit girls in the know, had a great idea: a guide to graffiti. So, the enlisted artist Shades to list some of the best spots in the city to peep some damn good graffiti. The list, taking you from the Dequindre Cut to MCS, could make a nice little afternoon tour on a lazy sunday.

Excerpt from Detroit Girls About Town:

1) Dequindre Cut.
The best place in the city to see graffiti and get into the feeling of what we [graffiti artists] experience would be the Dequindre Cut. It's an old, shut down train line that ran south to the warehouses on the river and north towards the major lines that would lead the trains out for industry. The two-mile area is now, for your pleasure, a bike/jogging trail from the river to eastern market.

Read the entire article here.

'Grown in Detroit' documentary earns praise

Tiny Mix Tapes -- a culture, news and reviews site -- takes a look at the Detroit-based documentary "Grown in Detroit."


Perhaps the most hopeful part of Grown in Detroit is the womens' insistence on continuing to garden and grow their own food after graduation. The care and respect shown to these vulnerable young women by everyone at the school is a testament to the goodwill and charity of which humans are thankfully still capable. But when all is said and done, it is the unabashed realism of the faculty and staff of the Catherine Ferguson Academy for Young Women that convinces us of the integrity of their good intentions. The Poppenks have made a truly remarkable documentary about a story of real, honest-to-goodness hope in one of the most unlikely places.

Read the entire article here.

Grading Time Inc.'s 'Assignment Detroit'

Time Inc. has descended onto Detroit either like a thunderstorm or as liberators, depending on who you talk to. There has been a blitz of blog posts, features stories, and videos from its self anointed "D Shack" portraying the Detroit they've seen so far.

Videos include an interview with K-9 to Five's Liz Blondy, a piece on 85 cent hamburgers, asking Detroiters why they love and hate the city, and another piece about how Detroiters "survive."

Stories have covered entrepreneurs, housing costs, Detroit's decline, and Ernie Harwell.

So, what's your take? How would you grade their assignment so far? Is it the same ol' same ol'? Or is it something different?

Our own media outlets and bloggers have been discussing the coverage as well. Read a piece by Crain's Detroit business here.

Listen to an interview with Daniel Okrent -- writer of Time's Detroit cover story -- on WDET's "Detroit Today" here.

And, last but not least, Dyspathy's "Assignment Detroit: The Drinking Game" will keep you reminded of the Detroit cliche's as well as keep you totally sauced when reading through Time's project.

Let us know what you think about the Time blitz on our Facebook page here.

Check out the Time Inc. coverage here.

Time: The Detroit Blog - A speical Time Inc. project

Time Inc.'s interest in Detroit has been well documented so far. But, in case you missed it, the big media machine has bought a house in East English Village and will set up shop there for a year to cover Detroit and all that it brings - both negative and positive.

In this week's In The News we have a piece up written by the New York Times, as well as a mention in the Tweet of the Week.

However, is a direct link to the Time Inc.'s Detroit blog. Track their work as they track ours.

See the blog here.

Tweet of the Week: Do what your mother says

So vacation is behind us and we're back with the Tweet of the Week. So, what do you have to say?

You should listen to your mother @miel_dulce, always listen to your mother.

@miel_dulce: my mom said to stay in detroit, im totally thinking about it...

We don't know where you are, but we wish you were still in Detroit, too. You can always come back.

@Bizemisty: I wish I was still in Detroit. I hate this place.

Congratulations Earthworks Urban Farm. Keep up the good work. And thanks @AshleySFlintoff for the heads up.

@AshleySFlintoff: Congrats to Earthworks Urban Farm - Detroit's 1st Certified Organic Farm! Check out their work at www.cskdetroit.org/earthworks

Exactly @dlexus2001, don't forget about us, whoever you are.

@dlexus2001: dont' forget bout detroit

And finally, the winner, for our first week back from vacation Tweet of the Week is:

@flamingowojack: Just got back from John K. King Used Bookstore in downtown Detroit. I'm there every week, but I find "new" stuff every time I go there...

True that, @flamingowojack. True that.

Keep reading. Keep tweeting. And see you next week.

Follow us on Twitter here.

Listen up: WDET's 'Home Is More Than Our House' series continues through July

WDET 101.9 FM reporters Rob St. Mary and Zak Rosen continue their coverage this week in their "Home is More Than Our House" series on how Detroiters are facing and fighting the foreclosure crisis.

Listen to Detroit Today on WDET this week for their stories. The program airs from 1-3 p.m. weekdays on 101.9 FM.

This week, Zak will be talking about the collaborate effort to stabilize Boston-Edison with median-income families, which in turn stabilizes the surrounding areas. Also, check out the great piece he did on Habitat for Hamtramck here.

Rob St. Mary offers a story on finding help for the Jewish community in Metro Detroit.

For more on the series, check out their blog: wdetmortgagecrisis.com

fDi Magazine names Detroit a city of the future

fDi Magazine, an investment mag produced by the Financial Times, released their cities of the future list and Detroit fell in at No. 10 for the largest cities of the future.


fDi Magazine’s North American Cities of the Future 2009/10 shortlists, which took more than six months to research and involved the data collection of nearly 400 North American cities, ranks San Francisco, California, as the top large city of the future, followed closely by Austin, Texas. Of the large cities surveyed, San Luis Potosí in Mexico ranks top for cost effectiveness, while Charlotte, North Carolina, ranks top for FDI strategy according to the judging panel.

Read the entire article here.

Tweet of the Week: Boats and dinosaurs... sorta

We'll start our list of the week's best Detroit-centric tweet with first-place winner @onslowlovesme, who wowed us with this awesome little cryptic bit: "Detroitosaurus wrecks"

Not sure exactly what you meant, but something about it sounds just right.

On to the runners up:

@JViniece: In recovery mode. Relay for Life detroit was a success. Over $71,000 raised. I stayed up the entire night. It was really great!

We're hard pressed to find a better reason to stay up all night than to raise $71,000 to fight cancer. Congratulations and thanks to all Detroiters who participated in this wonderful charity event.

@JMoneyRed: Detroiters : we have hella fresh lettuce grown @ TheYesFarm on E Farnsworth St 2 give-away ASAP! Hit me!

Free veggies! We can't argue with that.

@cassetto: First row of the season at the DETROIT boat club! A-ma-zing!

That's awesome! Was T-Pain there? Any chance we can get ON A BOAT with you?

@Newwaycorktown: extremely excited about the Roosevelt Park revitalization. This was one of our first targets upon moving to Corktown!!!

We're excited about this too, and looking forward to hearing more about all of the ways Detroiter's are making the city's summer more beautiful. Keep us posted!

Keep reading. Keep tweeting. And follow us on Twitter here.

The bottom-up process is the key to renewal, revival, Richard Florida says

Richard Florida is that creative class guy. Some agree with him, some don't. Wherever you fall on Florida, he does make some good points in his piece in the Atlantic that Detroit should pay attention to.


The most successful shrinking strategies, like Pittsburgh's, are not top-down affairs driven by all-knowing governments, but organic, bottom-up, community-based efforts. While Pittsburgh government and business leadership pressed for large-scale urban renewal - stadium-building, convention centers, and more far-fetched schemes for local mag-lev trains - its real  turnaround was driven by organic, bottom-up initiatives. Community groups, local foundations, and non-profits - not city hall or business-led economic development groups -  were the driving forces behind neighborhood stabilization and redevelopment, university-based economic development, water-front revitalization, park improvements, and green building among others.  This kind of bottom-up process takes considerable time and perseverance. In Pittsburgh's case, it took the better part of a generation to achieve stability and the potential for longer-term revival.

All of which brings us back to a big question: What about people versus place strategies? I agree with Glaeser: people must be the priority. Especially in tough economic times, public investment should flow toward people. Early childhood investments, as James Heckman has shown, are the most important, longest-running and highest-paying investments we make.

Read the entire article here.
96 Woodbridge Articles | Page: | Show All
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