I need to drive through it on my way to Canada and was thinking of stopping.
I know there are slums and problems but is there a part of it that is great or fun or interesting?
No to great and fun. Interesting depends on how squeamish and or interested in social problems you are.
Aside from a small still-vibrant section of downtown, large swaths of even the downtown-ish areas look like a burned out Beirut.
There isn't anyplace nice in Detroit to stop. If you want a break go to one of the nicer suburbs/neighborhoods like Ferndale.
Detroit makes you think you are in a third-world country. I was there for a few days on business a few years ago, and I could not believe I was in the US. It's beyond depressing.
Avoid Downtown. Avoid Highland Park more than Downtown. Be sure to visit the Henry Ford. Stop in Hamtramck for great Polish or German food.
Detroit has been dead since 1955
They opened a barbecue restaurant downtown that serves homemade pickles! Artists painted an abandoned house pink! Some college students formed a rock band! You can buy a house for 5 grand -- all you need to do is clean out the human shit, the violent squatters, and take care of the $20,000 tax lien. Detroit is coming back strong!
What R5 is trying to say is that you only want to go to where the white people are. Avoid the other neighborhoods.
Do you think the blacks all do thug sex?
That's be hot.
I was just there recently. It's a very weird place now - huge empty fields that are unmowed where lots of houses used to be give the city the feeling of being extremely rural when you're literally blocks from downtown. Everything has this spread out quality, and on top of that you still have thousands of abandoned buildings. It's quite unsettling - other than that, it's not really all that different from any other city.
Mexican village used to have some nice restaurants like Xochimilcos. The drive along the lake in Grosse Pointe is a mild sort of tonic for those who are fans of GP Blank the movie. There is Motown studios, but frankly, it's underwhelming. Greektown is pretty bland unless you like casinos. The two big business centers are Southfield (black) and Troy (white).
There are a bunch of pretty lakes and big houses around Pine Lake and Long Lake and Cass-Elizabeth Lake in the NW suburbs.
Dearborn has Detroit's "tourist attraction," the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village. But the Detroit Institute of Arts on Woodward a mile north of downtown is actually more impressive, relatively speaking.
The Detroit Institute of Arts is a wonderful place and is (last I saw) in a decent area. Sadly, the Detroit Science Center, which is across the street, has fallen on bad financial times and is now often closed. There are a few other museums in that area, but I do not know if they are open.
Granted, I haven't been to the DIA for a while. It would make me sad if the museum district has gone downhill too. Has anybody been there recently?
Blow passed it and carry on to Windsor.
There was nothing to see in Detroit 20 years ago and even less now.
So tell me about Windsor...I found it on a map but know nothing.
They have all nude male dancers.
Dolly Sods is lovely.
Stop in Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti instead. Lots of good places to eat; lively downtown areas (Main St. in AA, Depot Town in Ypsi); see who's playing at the Ark or wherever.
It sounds like a horrible place to visit, let alone live in.
If you want to do some shopping, Somerset Collection is an upscale mall in Troy - You'll take I-75 northbound and get off at Big Beaver Road (exit 69) and head west for a mile.
If you happen to pass by the weekend of June 28-30, Somerset has "CityLoft," which is a bunch of upscale shopping Downtown. I'd highly recommend just stopping by if that's when you'll be passing by.
Ferndale, at 9 Mile and Woodward, has a sizable gay population and decent restaurants, as does Royal Oak, just north of Ferndale.
R16 - Windsor is where 19 and 20 year old Detroiters go to drink. There's nothing noteworthy there.
I am sorry but Detroit is dangerous in such a fashion that you really need to be a local in order to know what few safe areas there are.
Memphis, TN is the same way but worse in that maybe only thirty five to forty percent of that city has any safe areas.
Maybe one day both of those cities will be alright but that day is not here yet at all.
R23 - you're so full of shit. Any easily accessible place in Detroit (downtown, midtown, Mexicantown) is perfectly safe. The dangerous places are obvious - they look completely desolate and it's obvious that you don't belong there. You have to make an effort to get to these places. If OP plans ahead, knows his route to and from his destination from the freeways, he will be fine.
[quote]I was just there recently. It's a very weird place now - huge empty fields that are unmowed where lots of houses used to be give the city the feeling of being extremely rural when you're literally blocks from downtown. Everything has this spread out quality, and on top of that you still have thousands of abandoned buildings. It's quite unsettling - other than that, it's not really all that different from any other city.
It's this atmosphere that really makes me want to visit Detroit - albeit NOT alone. It's sort of like Life Without People meets Chernobyl! And without all the nasty radiation, to boot!
St. Louis has Memphis and Detroit beat by a mile.
If you want to see what Berlin looked like after WWII, go to north St. Louis. Oh wait, the buildings have, for the most part, been cleared. Parts of north St. Louis now look like the great prairie in Kansas and Nebraska. Not a building around for blocks. Yet for all this vacant land, violent crime is still rampant. Who's committing the crimes if nobody is around?
Do you really have to ask, R26?
I recently saw a photography exhibit of all the decaying neighborhoods ,houses ,theaters in Detroit. It was hauntingly beautiful.
Detroit was fabulous in the late 80's so many fun underground parties and gay clubs.
What George Romney did to Detroit (including the Michigan left, which was implemented when he was Governor), Mitt Romney wants to do to the United States!
Why did someone asking what things there are to Detroit turn political?
If you have nothing to contribute, you're just talking to hear yourself speak.
Detroit's demise took place over years and years. Whites, blacks, and all political parties/leadership took part in the destruction.
Because Detroit was destroyed by politics. Corporate and Conservative politics. That ghost town does not represent "Free choice."
Coleman A Young also had a lot to do with it, too. There's a reason the City of Detroit is a mess, but it's surrounded by rich suburbs. Don't forget that Oakland County, which borders Detroit, is one of the richest counties in the US. Washtenaw County is also similarly affluent.
Blaming Detroit's situation on one party and one ideology is absurd. It's a lot more complicated than conservatives and liberals make it out to be.
Go say hi to Seth, ash and Les Gold.
"It is shocking how much of the United States has been abandoned due to Mitt RawMoney and his ilk sending jobs to China."
I love poliqueens. They always make me laugh.
You have to visit the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn. Lots of great middle eastern food in Dearborn. Great restaurants here in Bloomfield/ Birmingham.
On the contrary R40, Coleman Young was the victim of these politics, not the instigator.
Detroit lost 100,000 manufacturing jobs in the 1950s. Neither Coleman Young nor any other person of African ancestry had anything to do with it. Hate of Unions and a capital strike against Detroit all long predate the famed "riots."
But, just as a fair warning, the middle eastern food is nowhere near the Henry Ford, in spite of both being Dearborn.
R40 it is one ideology. The ideology of corporate rape and plunder and Mitt Romney's father was part of it before he was in politics as a corporate executive weenie.
I might add that Oakland County WAS NEVER one of the wealthiest counties of the US. Most of it is working class and always was. When they said that particular statistic, it was because they limited the population of counties to those with populations over a million. So they were comparing the Oakland County suburbs to central cities everywhere else. But Oakland has never been a "wealthy" county by any stretch of the imagination.
R44 - you obviously don't live in southeast Michigan.
The Us-Vs-Them attitude, Coleman Young's trademark, contributed to white flight, devastated the city, and pitted the city and its suburbs against each other. There are still remnants of Young's administration on the city council today who still are doing everything in their power to ensure Detroit remains impoverished and desolate.
Calling Coleman Young a victim (and even going as far as saying he's not an instigator) is hilarious.
R46 - You might want to check your facts, Oakland County is the 26th wealthiest county in the United States.
But please, keep trying to oversimplify a complex issue. Don't let these things called "facts" and "data" and "critical thinking" get in the way of your beliefs.
Such bullshit R47. Coleman Young was not the arch liberal you claim him to be, and less confrontational than Cavanaugh.
OP, do a search on "Detroit" and "new urbanism". There is a lot of innovative planning and redevelopment going on there. One example is "jane's Walk", based on the livable-cities philosophy of urban planner Jane Jacobs (see link). Some friends took a road trip through Detroit last summer and found plenty of interesting activity.
Coleman Young was the Nancy Pelosi of Michigan politics. Rabid racists focused so much hate and venom on him that if he crossed the road, they thought it was a plot to get whitey.
Coleman Young was far more divisive than Nancy Pelosi. I don't know why people hate Pelosi so much other than fear of a strong woman.
Coleman Young was more like the Orville Hubbard of Detroit. Divisive, segregationist, and corrupt.
I've always bought re-electing Coleman Young was not smart, in hindsight.
His continued presence on the political scene just exacerbated the systemic problems Detroit faced.
I understand he was a personable guy one-on-one though.
Sherwood Forest, where the Romneys lived, btw, is suburban scale, so I don't see what it has to do with Jane Jacobs' urbanism. The only place in metro Detroit for that style of urbanism is Dearborn.
iT'S a know un PC fact that cities that have a big black population turn to shit very quickly.
What happens to the underground infrastructures of these depopulated zones? And what about overhead powerlines?
My partner and I moved to St. Louis from Denver. We have gone to both Detroit and Memphis on vacations, as well as other places around the midsection of the country. Why? To see the country.
Detroit was horrible in the vastness of its losses. The foul-mouthed poster snarking on race misses the whole point, of course, of the real costs of what has happened to these cities and who has borne the real damages. Racist assholes such as R27 need to go to Romneyville and away from here.
BUT Detroit's art museum and some ethnic neighborhoods, and the Motown museum made the trip worth it. I didn't like the downtown. Revival isn't the same as life. What was worst about it was the white suburbs - the enormous ring, and how absolutely nasty white people acted. (We're white.)
Memphis? It's great in the way the river cities can combine decay and vitality for decades. The Lorraine Motel and civil rights museum are worth the trip, but with Elvis and the music and food, why the poster would suggest it is dead I don't know.
As for St. Louis, I live there. It is fascinating. It is depressed in large places, but the expanse of obliteration is not at all like Detroit. A tremendous amount of renovation, and in the city the continuous and connected areas from downtown through Soulard and Lafayette Square, over to Tower Grove East and South, down to Carondelet - and from downtown straight through midtown to the Central West End and West End - there is nothing comparable to that in Detroit. But race divides are what make things bad - both ways.
Some facts: from 1970 to 2000, 161,000 dwellings were torn down in Detroit, one third of the entire housing stock. During the last twenty of those years the total permits for construction or renovation: 9,000.
But despite tearing down 200,000 buildings in forty years, in 2010 Detroit still had 90,000 vacant properties.
I believe 290,000 is more buildings than St. Louis ever had.
Any one know about a new gallery on Library Street--called something like Curis? A friend of mine in showing there next month. According to her, Detroit has a large, hip group of art buyers.
Aren't a lot of Muslim immigrants moving to Detroit? They tend to settle in northern areas close to the Canadian border. Lots of back and forth between the US and Canada -- at border crossings and across unguarded areas.
Detroit is Death City.
Thanks for all the info. I will now avoid Detroit and seek out Windsor Canada.
Poor choice. Nothing interesting or unique in Windsor, and tons of great things to do in Detroit.
R69...so where have you been this entire thread?
There are plenty of posts detailing fun things to do in Detroit, and no posts mentioning anything to do in Windsor. I don't know where you came to the conclusion that Windsor is a better idea than Detroit.
Yes, Detroit was bigger than St. Louis, but in 1950 St. Louis City had 850,000 people, compared to less than 400,000 now. You can count, right, R63? No one needs to downplay the enormity of the urban collapse in Detroit, certainly.
St. Louis has numerous healthy neighborhoods. Detroit does not.
The people lack taste. Horrid accent, too.
Detroit people have an accent? I never noticed.
[quote] iT'S a know un PC fact that cities that have a big black population turn to shit very quickly.
Well, that explains Mississippi, West Virginia, Arkansas, Alabama, Louisiana .... black meccas, all. Otherwise, they would be wallowing in wealth. lol
What's the Wayne campus like these days?
I agree about Ann Arbor (R19) - a lovely small city with great restaurants and a sophisticated downtown with many sidewalk patios. We were very impressed when we were there a few years ago.
Monica Conyers was a real trip, and just one more of the city's crap elected officials who played a hand in making Detroit what it is today.
The clip below is a must-see. Watch Monica Conyers get a verbal beat-down from a girl (beginning at 2:43) who was part of a group of eighth graders brought in to have a discussion with her.
Those photos are amazing and apocalyptic, R28. The ruined grand station is particularly depressing, along with the abandoned (previously grand) theatres and the library abandoned with all the books still on the shelves. It's difficult to believe all that took place in the world's richest country.
When I look at the buildings in those pics/videos I try and imagine being the last person to ever walk out of them, never to return. It's totally bizarre. How do you just one day say "FUCK IT" and abandon a police station with all its files still inside, for example?
You could make a similar video anywhere in the country R79. Have you ever met a New York elected official? John Conyers is one of the top 2% of all Congressman in the country in terms of understanding what is going on.
Allow for a lot of time to get across the bridge, which is under heavy (and almost perpetual) construction on the American side. The tunnel might be better, but I generally go up to Port Huron and cross on the Blue Water Bridge to Sarnia -- slightly further if you are then traversing lower Ontario, but infinitely less nerve-wracking.
Here's an entire website devoted to The Fabulous Ruins of Detroit -- one of the most moving displays of post-industrial America that I have ever seen.
I don't know much about it since I've never lived there, but I hope Detroit, as well as Michigan as a whole, votes overwhelmingly for Barack Obama in November.
The slime that is Romney is trying to make a play for the state despite telling it to go bankrupt in 2008. He's trying to become the first Republican since 1988 to win there.
R79, that video is priceless. That kid is making the city councilwoman look like a lame idiot, which she is. Detroit has always suffered from bad leadership.
Yes you can. Only party, the Republicans, runs all the auto companies, the banks, the corporations, and the right wing antiunion state of Michigan.
More lame bullshit R90. It doesn't show that at all.
So, what's [italic]your[/italic] take on it, R92?
R94 = Mitt Romney
Is there a single elected official in that city that isn't a illiterate black ghetto thug?
R92, the councilwoman is patronizing the child. Ms Conyers is asking for the child's sympathy by positioning her own self as a child, saying "Haven't you ever wanted to speak out against authority?'
The child is challenging her, acknowledging that we all have annoying situations we need to deal with, but that those situations require forbearance and grace. She is asking the councilwoman to respect boundaries, not make excuses, and to essentially act like an adult.
Ms Conyers is in prison now for a nice long term -- something it is hard to get in Detroit unless you really push the limits. Glad she still has her fans, maybe she and Marion Barry in DC can form a power couple. Pulling the strings while barely able to get up a flight of stairs.
44/46 and numerous other post. In what universe was Coleman Young an innocent? Anyone I know that had to do business with him (or anyone else involved in politics in Detroit) were expected to first drop off a bag with money. Things have not changed at all. Kwame, Ficano...... and now the city will broke at the end of the week due to the genius lawyer that filed a lawsuit.
Where is Sherwood Forest? They lived herein Bloomfield by a golf course.
Dennis Archer tried but did not get far.
Detroit has been riddled with corroption.
Notice that when Monica Conyers was in court John Conyers was not around. She is typical of the elected officials. We now have Wayne County exec Robert Ficano caught up in his own scandals from ripping of the county through high paying perks and raises. He is white by the way. FBI still going after ex mayor Kwame and his pals.
Carpetbomb the city- with all the negroes inside. Then rebuild the city and watch it prosper.
Planet Of The _____
it's mostly white and crime is nonexistant.
R105, is great!
Is Datalounge hosting a troll festival?
[quote]it's mostly white and crime is nonexistant.
because all the white men sell their drugs or purchase them in black neighborhoods where drugs have been directed .... or whites buy their white prostitutes in black neighborhoods, or whites take part in illegal gambling, predatory illicit sex or purchase guns in black neighborhoods.
Obviously, dumb ass crackahs like you learned how to spell 'nonexistant', lol, in a ghetto school so you should know what goes on.
lol @ r100
Not one of these racist trolls posting Detroit city council vids has ever attended a city council meeting in their own city. I promise you they are just as embarrassing.
City council meeting always bring out the crazies, of all backgrounds.
Detroit is in worse shape than other American cities, but it is only a matter of degree. That's what most people don't get. There isn't that much other than (right now Obama) standing in the way of a similar outcome for Boston and LA and Atlanta.
Why do the people of Detroit keep electing shitty government officials?
for amusement on my iPad I roam around detroits streets. lots of vacant houses, also unkept streets. the place is a complete mess... Sure as hell those polititions on your city council would never clean up all that mess. Too interested in their political jobs. Maybe the British should have kept the place. Slums do have a reason to spread. Good times are not going to happen again in Detroit for a long time....Maybe you all had better move to North Dakota where the work is... or maybe your all just too lazy. The condition that Detroit is in sure shows what kind of people live there. Your not the only city having trouble.. Chicago is just as bad! Sure wouldn't walk the streets in either city at any time of day...I lived in both places in the late 50's and 60's... Since then everything has gone downhill fast.. Please do not move to North Dakota....and screw it up too.... A forieners opinion of your country!
No, I wish to live, OP.
R117 I know this will sound bad, but a lot black people just don't know how to take care of things or respect property and treat it like trash. It's sad that all those pretty buildings in Detroit have been treated like trash.