In an article in Model D last year
, Jerry Hebron of Oakland Avenue Urban Farm described what it was like to return to the neighborhood of her youth, the North End.
"It was depressing," Hebron says. "I was disappointed by what I saw in terms of the blight, the crime. There was a feeling of hopelessness."
Things aren't quite as dire in the North End. While it would be wrong to say the neighborhood is thriving, it's certainly gotten better. Abandoned homes have been demolished, modest developments have taken place, and new residents are moving in.
But that change is about to accelerate. The QLine streetcar and major development projects in neighboring New Center have brought renewed interest to the North End. It has solid, yet affordable housing stock that could be bought up by more affluent newcomers. More investment is on the way.
What does all this potential change mean? What do residents think about it? And what are local businesspeople, innovators, and leaders doing to direct it?
These are some of the questions we hope to answer in our latest "On the Ground
" series. Starting next week and lasting for several months, our embedded editor will be writing weekly articles from the North End to help tell the story of the people, projects, and innovations that are moving the neighborhood forward. You may remember prior entries from Osborn, Brightmoor, and Live6.
The North End is loosely bounded by I-75 and Woodward Ave. to the east and west, and Webb St. and E. Grand Boulevard and to the north and south. It contains important community anchors like Oakland Avenue Urban Farm
, ONE Mile Detroit
, and Vanguard CDC
We can't wait to write more about it. And uplift local voices within it. Stay tuned.
Support for the "On the Ground" is provided by the Kresge Foundation.