The first article I chose is titled “Are Developments Around Corktown Leading to An Urban Renewal of the Neighborhood?” The article discusses how the City of Detroit has been working in partnership with Ford Motor Company to bring about the urban renewal of Corktown, Detroit. Currently, Ford is in the process of restoring the historic Michigan Central Station and developing a mobility innovation hub. While these revitalization efforts are meant to positively impact the Corktown neighborhood, some residents fear that the projects could lead to unwanted changes. For instance, residents are concerned that the revitalization efforts led by the city of Detroit and Ford Motor Company could potentially lead to the gentrification of longtime residents.
Considering that housing rents have been rapidly increasing in Corktown - mainly due to Ford bringing 5,000 employees and contractors into the area - I do understand the residents’ concerns. In order to ensure a successful and sustainable restoration of the Corktown neighborhood, the governing officials of Detroit and the Ford Motor Company should prioritize the perspectives of the community members that will be most affected by this change.
The next article that I would like to highlight is titled “Detroit wins $30M grant for affordable housing in Corktown” and it was written about a month after the previous article I shared. This article discusses Mayor Mike Duggan’s commitment to build 500 affordable housing units in the Corktown neighborhood with the help from partners such as the Ford Motor Company. These plans to build subsidized housing units indicate that the City of Detroit and Ford listened to the concerns of the Corktown residents. It is refreshing to see a major company like Ford positively invest in the community that surrounds them.
Although the revitalization projects of the Detroit area are a step in the right direction, there still is a lot of work that needs to be done to address the deep rooted racial disparities and systemic inequalities in the region.