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Old 05-12-2011, 09:57 AM
 
Location: Southern Minnesota
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I'm a Michigander now living in the Great Plains. I'm back in MI for my first trip home in almost a year. One of the first things I noticed about my hometown is how much better things look economically. Most of the empty storefronts are now filled with businesses, some of the decrepit, abandoned buildings have been torn down and replaced with new construction and things just seem to be a lot "busier" than they were last year. Also, I've noticed the unemployment numbers are much lower than they were last year (9% now, 15% last year). I know this is just anecdotal evidence, but I hope Michigan is really coming back. It will always be home to me.
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Old 05-12-2011, 11:05 AM
 
Location: West Michigan
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Quote:
things just seem to be a lot "busier" than they were last year.
I've actually noticed this too. Seems like there are more trucks on the highway, longer trains, more cars on the roads. Maybe it's just me. Seems like it, though.
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Old 05-12-2011, 11:38 AM
 
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No other state in the US I think experiences the economic roller coaster ride as Michigan over the last 100 years. Its the nature of the auto industry. And it is reflected in the very urban landscape of Detroit.

I hope however that this upswing isn't going to put the business and civic leaders into a fall sense of security, and lose focus on economic diversification however. But I got faith that this time, the state will stick to diversification.
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:08 PM
 
Location: Cambridge, Isanti County, MN
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The big 3 will always control this state until Detroit finds a way to get people from the suburbs and beyond back living and working in the city. Once Detroit is re-integrated, business owners will see it as a place of opportunity, rather than the racially divided war zone it is now, and they just may think it worth their while to set up shop there. When that happens, new construction follows, and people start heading downtown for things OTHER than sporting events or concerts. They go just to be there, because it's a great place to be. Think about it: International border, giant scenic river, bridges, classic architecture just begging to be mixed with new......it's sitting there waiting to happen. Until it does, the unions and auto companies will carry or drop Michigan for the duration.
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:19 PM
 
Location: Southern Minnesota
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Originally Posted by Northman View Post
The big 3 will always control this state until Detroit finds a way to get people from the suburbs and beyond back living and working in the city. Once Detroit is re-integrated, business owners will see it as a place of opportunity, rather than the racially divided war zone it is now, and they just may think it worth their while to set up shop there. When that happens, new construction follows, and people start heading downtown for things OTHER than sporting events or concerts. They go just to be there, because it's a great place to be. Think about it: International border, giant scenic river, bridges, classic architecture just begging to be mixed with new......it's sitting there waiting to happen. Until it does, the unions and auto companies will carry or drop Michigan for the duration.
I know. Detroit has the potential to be a GREAT city. Excellent scenery, historic architecture and proximity to Canada are all big plusses. Detroit needs some gentrification -- once artsy types start moving in, other people with money and economic power will follow. People just need to get over their fear of crime and "the other" and head back to the city.

Vive le Détroit!
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:21 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit Area, Michigan
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Just found out a couple days ago the tubbys sub store by me is now closed down and the storefront is up for lease. The nearest tubby store is a six mile round trip.
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:23 PM
 
Location: Southern Minnesota
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Originally Posted by Jwo85 View Post
Just found out a couple days ago the tubbys sub store by me is now closed down and the storefront is up for lease. The nearest tubby store is a six mile round trip.
I'm from West Michigan, so I'm not as familiar with the eastside. I've heard Metro Detroit is still really suffering.
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Northman View Post
The big 3 will always control this state until Detroit finds a way to get people from the suburbs and beyond back living and working in the city. Once Detroit is re-integrated, business owners will see it as a place of opportunity, rather than the racially divided war zone it is now, and they just may think it worth their while to set up shop there. When that happens, new construction follows, and people start heading downtown for things OTHER than sporting events or concerts. They go just to be there, because it's a great place to be. Think about it: International border, giant scenic river, bridges, classic architecture just begging to be mixed with new......it's sitting there waiting to happen. Until it does, the unions and auto companies will carry or drop Michigan for the duration.
And I think Detroit can even do things in an even better way than Chicago.

Mending relationships between the city of Detroit and the suburbs can lead to an even better quality of life than Chicago. In Chicago its too easy to be self satisfied with the condition of downtown and the north side, that it is too easy for Chiagoans to accept the condition of the south and west sides, and the southeast suburbs borderling NW Indiana (which we all know are a lot like the condition of Detriot.

Northsiders/north suburbanites can easily dismiss all of south Chicagoland, saying "well all cities have areas like that" Which isn't quite true. Chicagos south side/south suburb blight is sort of on par with the city of Detroit.

However all Detroit suburbanites as the go to downtown are going to have to see the condition of the city, and realize that they have to work together otherwise they are all screwed. Whereas in Chicago, the south side/south suburbs continue to fester in their condition, because the downtown and north side satisfy residents and tourists.
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Old 05-12-2011, 04:01 PM
 
Location: Cambridge, Isanti County, MN
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Originally Posted by Tex?Il? View Post
And I think Detroit can even do things in an even better way than Chicago.

Mending relationships between the city of Detroit and the suburbs can lead to an even better quality of life than Chicago.
Mmmmm.....I see where you're going with that, but let's not get carried away here. Chicago is one of the great cities in all the world. It's so much better than Detroit in so many ways that I don't have time to even begin listing them.

....and that's not a knock on Detroit, by any means. Detroit....and its suburbs.....are where I am from, and my love for that area can never die, no matter how bad things get. A lot of people don't realize that up until 1970 or so Detroit was very "Chicagoesque", and was the 4th largest city in America at one point. Look at the photos of the town from, say, 1950.....that town was HOPPIN', man! It was one of THE places to be! Anyone watch old movies....like on TCM for instance? Detroit is always portrayed in a manner similar to how New York and Chicago are today in those old films, because that's the way it was!

It's certainly more affordable to live in the Detroit metro than most places in Chicagoland, but Detroit has light years to travel before it can ever be mentioned in the same breath with the Windy City again in anything other than geographical location. I certainly hope it happens, but I know it won't be within my lifetime if it does. I guess I can see the Detroit area eventually being more desirable for some because of less congestion and the like - IF the city gets back on track.....is that what you meant?

Last edited by Tyryztoll; 05-12-2011 at 04:11 PM..
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Old 05-12-2011, 04:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Northman View Post
Mmmmm.....I see where you're going with that, but let's not get carried away here. Chicago is one of the great cities in all the world. It's so much better than Detroit in so many ways that I don't have time to even begin listing them.

....and that's not a knock on Detroit, by any means. Detroit....and its suburbs.....are where I am from, and my love for that area can never die, no matter how bad things get. A lot of people don't realize that up until 1970 or so Detroit was very "Chicagoesque", and was the 4th largest city in America at one point. Look at the photos of the town from, say, 1950.....that town was HOPPIN', man! It was one of THE places to be! Anyone watch old movies....like on TCM for instance? Detroit is always portrayed in a manner similar to how New York and Chicago are today in those old films, because that's the way it was!

It's certainly more affordable to live in the Detroit metro than most places in Chicagoland, but Detroit has light years to travel before it can ever be mentioned in the same breath with the Windy City again in anything other than geographical location. I certainly hope it happens, but I know it won't be within my lifetime if it does. I guess I can see the Detroit area eventually being more desirable for some because of less congestion and the like - IF the city gets back on track.....is that what you meant?

You're right from old pictures I've seen, and all the history I have learned about Detroit. It is very true that up until 1970 Detroit was very "Chicagoesque"

But I am afraid you have proven my point. Among cities regarded as "world class" in the 21t century, none of them have quite an extensive area of deindustrialized, half abandoned, crime infested areas as large swaths of the south and west side of Chicago. Again, no few tourists attractions are located in areas, where one have to see these areas. LA for example has infamous areas like South Central, Watts, Compton down the port, but although that area has lots of violent crime, it looks completely intact. It looks like a 100% lived in working class neighborhood of the midwest.

The bad areas of Chicagoland in every way look like Detroit proper. This sets Chicago apart from San Fran or Boston, and honestly almost none of New York has quite the level of vacant lots where there used to be factories, houses. You can see this on google earth.

On the flipside, despite the condition of the city of Detroit, not other city that comes that close to having those level of problems have areas as amenity filled, and economically vibrant as Oakland County or Ann Arbor. Is it a problem that all the economic vitality, wealth and beautiful areas are largely in the suburbs, yet, but the fact is, is that they are there nonetheless, within 40 miles of downtown Detroit.

So my point is that if you compared the downtowand and urban core between Chicago and Detroit, there is absolutely no comparison.

However if you compare the wider metropolitan area, then the differences between the two narrow. The wealth, vitality, and amenities are distributed around more unevenly.

Personally while I love a healthy, walkable, transit-oriented downtown, I personally prefer, lively, walkable, amenity filled urban-suburbs.

If I can live in area where I can walk to bars, restaurants, shopping, museums, etc. and go out with eligible ladies that are not dominated by skyscrapers, high rises, and loud subways/Elevated trains, but rather small town/small city looking main streets with parks with natural woods instead of artificially planted areas I prefer that. Which I why I think Southeast is pretty cool. I wish downtown Detroit really became a shining city again, but I would still prefere Royal Oak, Birmingham, Dearborn, or Ann Arbor to actually live in.

Its also why I think LA is the most amazing city in the world. I don't care so much if the downtown is underwhelming for a city its size as long as the whole county has a whole of small suburban cities that have tons of fascinating things to see and do. Again, Chicagoland is kind of low on things to do outside the urban core for a metro area its size.
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