What Is Detroit? A City, An Industry, An Idea

February 12, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

What Is Detroit? A City, An Industry, An Idea

Micheline Maynard, Contributor Joann Muller, Forbes Staff By now, you’ve probably heard these words, spoken in a famous, raspy voice, during Chrysler’s commercial during half time of the Super Bowl. “This isn’t a game. The people of Detroit know a little something about this. They almost lost everything. But we all pulled together. Now, the Motor City is fighting again.” But did Clint Eastwood refer to the city of Detroit — or Detroit, the auto industry? Did he mean the actual residents of Detroit, or everything involved in the imaginary Motor City, which sweeps from Detroit, down through Louisville and on to Dallas? As a city fights for survival, and car companies fight for revival, it’s very easy for images, metaphors and symbolism about Detroit to become mixed up in a big pot of mythical gumbo. (Not to mention a bubbling political controversy.) We’ve been trying to discern the different flavors at our public media project, Changing Gears, and it just isn’t easy. The... 

Bing to cops: Move to city, get $1,000 home, fix-it funds

February 8, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Bing to cops: Move to city, get $1,000 home, fix-it funds

Here is a spectacular initiative by the City to improve living conditions for residents. Leonard N. Fleming / The Detroit News Detroit — Mayor Dave Bing today announced an unprecedented program to entice police officers to move back into the city by offering ownership of 200 tax-foreclosed homes in two of the city’s most stable neighborhoods. Flanked by top police brass and administration officials, Bing helped detail the program called “Project 14” in which foreclosed homes will be available in the East English Village and Boston-Edison neighborhoods. The program name alludes to police code for “back to normal.” Officers will pay up to $1,000 for the houses and receive up to $150,000 in federal grants to rehab them. City officials said the homes are in good shape for abandoned properties but need some work. The mayor said that police officers “living in their neighborhoods have the potential to deter crime, increase public safety and improve... 

Quicken’s move could inspire more firms to come downtown

August 24, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Quicken’s move could inspire more firms to come downtown

BY JOHN GALLAGHER FREE PRESS BUSINESS WRITER When 700 employees of Quicken Loans arrived for work Monday at the Compuware building, they each found a gift bag stuffed with discount coupons from nearby downtown restaurants and shops very eager to make their acquaintance. Long-suffering businesses downtown have been eagerly awaiting Quicken’s move from suburban Livonia, seeing it as a sign of better days ahead. Downtown has been suffering a king-sized hangover from the prolonged recession. Among the restaurant owners contributing discount cards to the gift bags was Jon Grabowski, owner of the Spa 19 24 Grille at the Westin Book Cadillac. “Any exposure we can give to new businesses coming downtown only helps this idea of a greater Detroit,” Grabowski said Monday. Employees of Quicken, an Internet-based mortgage lending company, also got a discount coupon from CK Mediterranean Grille & Catering, which by coincidence opened for business Monday in the Compuware... 

Downtown Detroit to get 4,700 more workers

August 24, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Downtown Detroit to get 4,700 more workers

Quality of life to improve BY JOHN GALLAGHER FREE PRESS BUSINESS WRITER After suffering years of depletion and brutal recession, downtown Detroit is about to get an infusion of new people as two firms plan to move a total of 4,700 workers downtown. The long-awaited move by online mortgage giant Quicken Loans will take place in August, bringing 1,700 workers to the Compuware building. And an announcement is imminent of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan’s move of 3,000 workers from its suburban offices to the 500 and 600 towers of the Renaissance Center, a person familiar with the details said Tuesday. Taken together, the moves mean more employees eating at downtown restaurants, strolling on the RiverWalk, staying late for ballgames and concerts, and taking advantage of downtown amenities from yoga to bird-watching. “It’s not only great for the city from an economic standpoint but from quality of life,” said Sandra van Meek, director of programming for... 

Housing Markets That Will Be Strongest by 2014

August 10, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Housing Markets That Will Be Strongest by 2014

By Venessa Wong, Bloomberg Businessweek Aug 4, 2010 Where will prices rebound most by state? A housing market rebound seems tenuous following the expiration of the home buyer tax credit, and consumer confidence remains weak due to lackluster employment, but David Stiff, chief economist at Fiserv, says the bottom is near. Home prices in the U.S. have declined 29.5 percent over the past four years, according to the Fiserv Case-Shiller Indexes. Stiff says prices should form a trough early next year, when median prices will be down an estimated 32.9 percent from the 2006 peak. By early 2014, they will have climbed about 7.2 percent from 2010 levels, according to the indexes. Fiserv and Moody’s Economy.com base the housing forecast on factors that include income growth, demographic trends, unemployment rates, foreclosure rates, and construction costs. Of 384 places surveyed, the Bremerton–Silverdale area in Washington State had the highest four-year growth forecast, with... 

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