Sunday, July 28, 2013

uh.., colleges and healthcare complexes are little unsustainable artificial urban densities


npr | The debt-laden city of Detroit has been an incubator for new strategies in urban revitalization, including a downtown People Mover, casinos, urban farms, artist colonies and large scale down-sizing.

In the wake of the city's bankruptcy, many in the community are thinking small.

Just outside of downtown Detroit is a neighborhood called Midtown. Like many hip, urban neighborhoods, it's got hipsters on fixed geared bikes, yoga studios, boutiques for dogs.

And while urban neighborhoods in other cities have been redeveloping for a decade or more, things here are just now starting to take off.

Part of the reason is a woman who's often called the Mayor of Midtown.

Sue Mosey is president of , a non-profit planning and economic development agency that works to encourage new business and housing and preserve the history of the neighborhood about two miles north of downtown.

"It's been an area that's experienced a lot of disinvestment over the last 60 years," says Mosey. "But over the last 10 to 20 years there's been a lot of reinvestment coming back into the neighborhood."

The neighborhood has a large public university, an arts college. It has two major healthcare systems, the big cultural institutions. It's anchored by Wayne State University, the Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit Medical Center and the Henry Ford Hospital and the College of Creative Studies.