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Get Into The Groove on Record Store Day - Photo by Marvin Shaouni
Get Into The Groove on Record Store Day - Photo by Marvin Shaouni | Show Photo


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Belle Isle Conservancy president answers questions about future of city park

The Belle Isle Conservancy is like Switzerland. It will work for the greater good of the island park with nearly everyone who comes to the table.

An excerpt from this Q&A with the group's president Michele Hodges:

It’s important to be open to options and find the model that is going to work best for the city of Detroit. Certainly, one of the models is the Central Park Conservancy (in New York). When they started out in the 1980s, Central Park was in far worse condition than Belle Isle. And they found one project, their Dairy Barn, which was their starting point, and look where they’ve come since then.

They've come a long way, indeed. Read on and watch the video here.

National Bike to Work day gathering at BCBS

On Friday May 17, celebrate national Bike to Work Day in downtown Detroit by riding to a gathering of likeminded cyclists. Food and limited giveaways will be available.

 Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan will host a morning reception 7 - 9 a.m. in the outdoor courtyard of its downtown Detroit Tower headquarters. 

Though registration is not required to ride, BCBS would like to know if you're coming. Go here to sign up.

Listen up: Greening of Detroit Grandmount-Rosedale project on WDET

Browsing the usual suspects for awesome stuff that happened in the past week, we came upon this, a sweet report on WDET on Greening of Detroit doing a planting in Northwest Detroit.

An excerpt:

Dozens of volunteers joined WDET and the Greening of Detroit to plant trees on Saturday in the Grandmont-Rosedale neighborhood. The nonprofit has planted more than 80,000 trees in the city since it first put "roots" down in 1989. WDET’s Pat Batcheller spoke with the Greening of Detroit’s Dean Hay and Trish Hubbell. With all the things Detroit needs, they explain how trees fit into that and how they improve life in the city.

To listen to the broadcast hit the link at the top of this page

Detroit is finalist for Summer X Games

It's official, reports HuffPost Detroit, Detroit impressed ESPN enough to be named a finalist last week for the Summer X Games beginning in 2014.

An excerpt:

ESPN announced the competing cities had been narrowed down to Detroit, Chicago, Austin, Texas and Charlotte, N.C. Organizers Kevin Krease and Garret Koehler, with the support of city administration, business leaders and other stakeholders, submitted their official bid for the project in early April. Good work, guys.

More here.

Detroit 2020: Midtown rolling with momentum

It was nice to see Channel 7's Detroit 2020 focus on the recent successes of Midtown and, in particular, the dedicated vision and leadership of Midtown Inc. president Sue Mosey.

An excerpt: It takes a quick pace to keep up with Sue Mosey.

She’s the dynamo leading the redevelopment of Detroit’s Midtown neighborhood. "It’s taken a very long time to get to the point where acceleration is moving very quickly, but I think we’ve reached that point now," Mosey says.

Read on and watch the segment here.

Detroit Archdiocese relocates to Capitol Park

There are a couple of promising developments in one move here: Capitol Park gets an anchor tenant in the Archdiocese of Detroit; and its vacated properties -- most spectacular among them the gorgeous Chancery bilding on Washington Blvd, adjacent to St. Aloysius church -- are being put on the market. The Freep got the story first but Curbed got the pictures.

Take a look here.

Richard Florida: Redevelop neighborhoods for true urban prosperity

Sure, another day, another verbal transmission from Professor Florida. This piece has some of the usual Detroit suspects: Gilbert, Slows, the 7.2 data. But it also reprises an old creative class chestnut that actually answers the urbanist's chicken or the egg question: what comes first talent or capital?

An excerpt: 

I have long believed that talent attracts capital far more effectively and consistently than capital attracts talent. The most creative individuals want to live in places that protect personal freedoms, prize diversity, and offer an abundance of cultural opportunities. A city that wants to attract creators must offer a fertile breeding ground for new ideas and innovations.

Recent college graduates are flocking to Brooklyn not merely because of employment opportunities, but because it is where some of the most exciting things in the world are happening--in music, art, design, food, shops, technology, and green industry. Economists may not say it this way, but the truth of the matter is: being cool counts. When people can find inspiration in a community that also offers great parks, safe streets, and extensive mass transit, they vote with their feet.

We haven't used the word "cool" in a while. Feels, uhm, a bit nostalgic. Read more here.

Bloomberg: Startups providing entrepreneurial spark in Detroit, NOLA

It may be an old story for us to read about techie entrepreneurs setting up shop in old U.S. cities like Detroit. But it's still some sort of validation when Bloomberg News picks up the ball and runs with it.

An excerpt:

While the bulk of venture capital dollars go to Silicon Valley and New England, cities little heralded for their tech scenes have been successfully coaxing technology entrepreneurs to set up shop in recent years. That includes Detroit, New Orleans and St. Louis, where municipal and private initiatives are attracting newbies and natives returning from the coasts.

Read more here.

Listen to Model D publisher Claire Nelson co-host 'Prosperity Agenda'

Here at Model D, we never tire of listening to Claire Nelson talk about the city she loves. You can do the same by clicking on the link below, which leads you to the 'Presperity Agenda," an hour-long radio program hosted by Dan Gilmartin, CEO of the Michigan Municipal League (the League). The show is sponsored by the League and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA).

Nelson co-hosted a recent episode. Check it out here.

Who doesn't like Founders beer? Vote for your fave style in Pure Michigan promotion

With the craft beer craze continuing to sweep Michigan and summer approaching, Pure Michigan and Founders Brewing Co. have teamed up to give fans and craft beer enthusiasts a chance to pick a Founders beer style that best represents Pure Michigan. 

The beer chosen by fans will be featured in the Founders tap room in downtown Grand Rapids throughout July as part of Michigan Craft Beer Month.

Running through Friday, May 3, fans can vote between the following three beer styles – Vanilla Stout, Apple Ale and Wheat IPA. To vote, go here. Individuals 21 and over can vote once a day for the duration of the contest and the winning beer will be announced in May. 

Home to more than 100 breweries, Michigan is fifth in the nation for the number of breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs. Michigan’s craft brewers are also part of a close knit community, promoting all that the Great Beer State has to offer.

Let's get growing: Pot & Box pops up at D:hive

Hey, gardeners and other flora lovers, Pot & Box: Detroit, which is planning on opening a permanent location in Corktown later this year, will be in residence at downtown's D:hive from May through July this summer.

Join the celebration this Thursday, May 2 for a ribbon cutting promptly at 6:15 p.m. with cans of champagne (P&B's signature shop drink at the Ann Arbor location), pizza from Supino, and other treats.

D:hive is at 1253 Woodward Ave., Detroit.

Get more info here.

NYT: Late artist Mike Kelley's mobile homestead coming to MOCAD

We were saddened to hear of the death of Los Angeles-based Mike Kelley, an artist with Detroit roots. Kelley had been working with the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit on his mobile homestead project for several years prior to his passing.

We've been following the project, still in the works with a launch planned this spring, as has the New York Times.

An excerpt:

The New York The house is a faithful replica of the suburban Detroit childhood home of the artist Mike Kelley, who shepherded the details of its creation up to the final days of his life in January 2012, when he committed suicide at his home in South Pasadena, Calif. Kelley was one of the most influential artists of the last several decades. And though he made his name in the Los Angeles art world, much of the look and feel of his art came from his working-class, Irish Catholic upbringing here, in a city whose affliction he seemed to embody.

Read on here.

World beat: Dan Gilbert's downtown makeover gets play in London media

Sure, we hear about another new purchase by Dan Gilbert's real estate team every other week or so, but what's not to like about a major league redevelopment project that aims to turn downtown Detroit into one of the country's most liveable neighborhoods?  

Even the Brit journos are noticing. Another good sign. An excerpt:

His Bedrock property management company owns 22 buildings with more than 3m square feet in the city. He's attracting big names back into the city. Gilbert convinced Chrysler to take office space downtown and renamed a building after the car firm; he recently toured the city with Microsoft's Steve Ballmer. He's effectively created a business campus in the heart of a city some had written off as dead. A death that had been a long time coming.

Blimey, how dramatic. Read more here.

HuffPost Detroit: Filmmaker talks about how Highland Park became his muse

Highland Park, once one of Detroit's most prosperous suburbs and home of the world's first assembly line, is the subject of a feature film starring Danny Glover and Parker Posey.

HuffPost Detroit talked to the film's director. An excerpt:

How did you first become interested in the city Highland Park?

The main thing I was looking for … was a prototypical rags-to-riches-to-rags-again community that highlighted the Rust Belt economy. I immediately hit on Highland Park as this ultimate symbol of everything that went right, and then everything that went wrong, at the same time. How a small community went from farmland, to the cradle of the American dream, back to almost farmland or prairie in only 100 years.

Good stuff. More 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.
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