Detroit apathy

Anyone else notice a sense of apathy and frustration towards Detroit? Personally when I look around Detroit right now, I don’t see a bright future or any of that. I see failure, blight and frustration. In expressing my concern about my feelings to friends, I found many had similar feelings.

We don’t hate the city. It is just that after Super Bowl there was a glimmer of hope that things would be better. But before the weekend was over, Detroit was back to its old self. Instead of feeling renewed and alive, we feel tired and defeated.

Anyone else feeling it? Anyone got an idea of how to get out of the funk?

10 Comments so far

  1. Jeff Widen (unregistered) on May 3rd, 2006 @ 9:45 pm

    Everyplace has some negatives to it, the trick is to find the positives and hold fast. Just today, for example, I was at Campus Martius Park during the lunchtime and it was filled with people. Some were listening to the new Detroit Tours announcement, others were reading while sitting in the plentiful chairs, others munching on Au Bon Pain sandwiches. And of course a group playing petanque – inviting the many on-lookers to join in (they did). At the Eastern Market on Saturdays – there’s tons of people enjoying the sights and scents of fresh produce and flowers. It’s all about being the right places at the right times.


  2. baliad (unregistered) on May 4th, 2006 @ 8:15 am

    i have to agree mgal… i have been experiencing the same thing and have been feeling a little guilty for feeling that way… for me, i just try to do my part and try to remind myself that things take time and that Detroit isn’t going to be the city i want to be over night… living in Midtown it’s a little easier as work on lofts are still being done and new stores are still popping up… but the percieved momentum doesn’t seem to be as strong and that makes it difficult…


  3. MGal (unregistered) on May 4th, 2006 @ 8:31 pm

    I think it is harder on those living in the city. The people I know who commute in mention the malaise but then leave. Heck, it has become a common thing for my friends and I to encourage “Leave the City” days. Problem is depending on which ‘burb you go visit you can come back even more disillusioned.

    So what did happen with the city? Did we all get caught up in the illusion of Super Bowl and now reality is just crashing down on us? Or are the star/moon/planets just horrible misaligned?


  4. Girl in the D (unregistered) on May 5th, 2006 @ 2:55 pm

    I don’t feel that way at all. I’ve seen many more people walking around the downtown area and even jogging the streets on my route home than I ever have before, residential development is not showing any signs of slowing down and there’s new commercial construction going on, as well. I’ve also been trying out a lot of the new restaurants and going to some of the new retail stores.


  5. tomo (unregistered) on May 5th, 2006 @ 3:16 pm

    I think your feeling of funk does resonate with some people who were very optimistic just before and during the Superbowl. I’m not sure why exactly one should feel this way, but perhaps it’s because all the mid-term projects that were announced right around the time of the Superbowl are still in various stages of work (some seemingly stalled, a funk-producer perhaps) and it’s hard to have to wait the two years it’ll take for many, perhaps the majority of those announced, to be completed and for them to have an affect on the city.

    OTOH, as GitD says, it does feel like there are more people downtown on a Saturday night, that, although not every night is like Superbowl Saturday, there is still momentum. I wish I had real numbers. Anecdotally, I see a lot of limos.

    For techno lovers, there’s still DEMF and more generally TasteFest to look forward to. Listening to music is a good way to get out of the funk. Also, the Mexicantown welcome center is something to look forward to at summer’s end. Why not find something fun to do for Cinco de Mayo, Southwest Detroit-style?


  6. lilpup (unregistered) on May 6th, 2006 @ 9:20 am

    funk = too much thinking not enough seeing

    last two visits to the riverfront saw families enjoying the space with children playing, chasing seagulls, running up and down on the GM plaza, watching fishermen haul in their catches

    it was beautiful


  7. Mgal (unregistered) on May 7th, 2006 @ 7:18 pm

    This all may be true on the Riverwalk and Campus Martius, but there is a lot more to Detroit then just the CBD. Drive just past Belle Isle or up Woodward or Grand River… Go outside the “safe/cool” areas and it isn’t so pretty. But it should be. We should be just beautify-ing downtown, we should be going beyond into the neighborhoods with the people live.


  8. baliad (unregistered) on May 7th, 2006 @ 10:30 pm

    very true, but that’s a tall order for this city considering we’re broke and make it impossible for others to help us… i was speaking with a gentleman who works with Microsoft… he told me of how they went to the city of Detroit and offered them tens of thousands of dollars worth of new computer equipment for the public school system only to be told to fill out a stack of papers about 2 inches thick before they’d even look at the stuff… as a result, Microsoft went to the ‘burbs who gladly accepted the equipment without blinking an eye and required no paperwork of them… if that’s what we’re dealing with, then we should consider ourselves lucky that anything’s happening anywhere in our city… but yes, i agree with you, we’ve gotta see improvement outside of the CBD…


  9. Joan (unregistered) on May 10th, 2006 @ 10:39 pm

    I think my frustration with the city is that I just always get mixed signals. So much time and money are spent in specific areas (downtown, New Center, RenCen) but once you leave those areas it’s a whole different mindset.
    It’s embrassing to get off the Southfield Xway, and to drive the service drive and just see heaps of trash behind people’s homes. I just wonder, don’t those folks ever look behind their fences and just clean it up?


  10. max (unregistered) on May 11th, 2006 @ 1:36 pm

    they used to…now they don’t know what to do with it maybe. i know that i have a two seat car and now have no real convenient way of disposing of bulk trash.



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