Photo: Metro Mode Media



People who think of Detroit as the Motor City aren’t always aware that it has an active bicycling culture that is helping to reinvent the city’s image.

Those biking enthusiasts are about to get a feature that the world’s most bike-friendly cities have: protected bike lanes.

The Detroit Free Press says construction will begin soon on Detroit’s first dedicated lanes for bicyclists. These are different than just the bike lanes you see painted on ordinary city streets.

Protected bike lanes are separated from traffic by barriers. The lanes are clearly designated for use by bicyclists, which keeps them from having to dodge parked cars and avoid motorists.

The lanes can be found in cities around the world, from Copenhagen to Chicago. Unlike those places, Detroit’s project is a modest one.

About a half-mile of lanes are being built on Jefferson Avenue, on the city’s east side, near its border with Grosse Pointe Park.

That’s a sharp contrast to the 170 miles of painted bike lanes that have popped up across the rest of the city since 2006. But the Free Press says that there are plans to expand the lanes farther west on Jefferson Avenue to East Grand Boulevard, and eventually to downtown Detroit.

Click HERE For The Full Article! 



Cranbrook Institute of Science invites adults 21 and over to experience a night of camp at the museum on Thursday, June 25 from 7-11 p.m. when its CIS After Dark program presents Camp After Dark.

Who says kids get to have all the summer fun?  The Institute will blend well-loved summer camp activities with well-mixed cocktails and experiences for a-not-so traditional camp “After Dark” at the museum.

Guests will gather around the campfire for ghost stories (weather permitting), spit watermelon seeds, dissect owl pellets, race boats in the reflecting pool, stay dry (hopefully) in a water balloon toss, and practice their Native American hunting skills.  Crafts, games, walks on Cranbrook’s campus looking for bats, and science experiments make Camp After Dark the ultimate grown-up escape.

Classic summer cocktails, craft beers, and food, including a “walking taco,” will be available for purchase in Reflections Café.  A vendor market offers the chance to shop, taste, and buy. Preregistered tickets are $10 for Institute of Science Members and $15 for non-Members, or $20 at the door for all attendees.

Register online at http://science.cranbrook.edu/find-program-event/cis-after-dark

CIS After Dark events are age 21+ only. All attendees will be required to show their Government-Issued ID upon check in. Cash bar only. No credit cards.

CIS After Dark is a series of science and fun events at Cranbrook institute of Science for adults 21+. Each event highlights a different thematic topic and the opportunity to explore the museum after dark to meet imaginative scientists, artists, thinkers, and tinkerers. Guests participate in live demonstrations, enticing conversations, engaging activities, new experiences, and more. CIS After Dark is much more than the field trips you knew growing up!

Cranbrook Institute of Science, Michigan’s Museum of Natural History, is part of the world-renowned Cranbrook Educational Community at 39221 Woodward Avenue in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

The museum is open Tuesdays-Thursdays 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays 10 a.m.-10 p.m., and Sundays noon-4 p.m.

Regular admission is $13 for adults and $9.50 for children 2-12 and senior citizens (65+); children under 2 and members are admitted free. Courtesy of MASCO Corporation Foundation, admission is free after 5 p.m. on the first Friday of each month. Other Fridays and all Saturdays after 5 p.m. admission is reduced to $6.50 for adults and $5.50 for children 2-12 and senior citizens; children under 2 and members are admitted free.

For information about becoming a member of Cranbrook Institute of Science, call (248) 645-3200 or visit http://science.cranbrook.edu.

2015 detroit fireworks from Green Sky Creative on Vimeo.



After decades of disinvestment, a new trend is beginning to emerge in Michigan metropolitan areas, with Grand Rapids and Detroit-Ann Arbor leading the way: a shift back towards walkable urban places, referred to as “WalkUPs.” According to a new report released today at the LOCUS (a program of Smart Growth America) Michigan Leadership Summit by the George Washington University School of Business (GWSB), in partnership with Michigan State University, there is significant pent-up demand for walkable urbanism in Michigan, evident by the rent and price premiums for walkable real estate that have emerged over the last several years.

The report – The WalkUP Wake-Up Call: Michigan – examined the top seven metropolitan areas across Michigan, including Detroit-Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids-Muskegon-Holland, Lansing, Jackson, Kalamazoo-Battle Creek, Saginaw-Bay City-Midland, and Flint.

The research analyzes and defines the different forms and economic use of all land use across these seven metro areas, revealing there are 46 WalkUPs. These WalkUPs are ranked by economic performance, measured by average rents, and by social equity performance, measured by accessibility, opportunity, and affordability for residents. Lastly, the report identifies emerging WalkUPs where new development could go.

The analysis uncovers a trend becoming more apparent that tells us that Michigan metros are moving away from drivable sub-urban development, which has long been the dominant form of development so associated with the automobile industry. This shift is evident in rising rent and price premiums. Across all of the metros, apartments rent for more per square foot when they are located in a WalkUP, as compared to a drivable sub-urban location. The same is true for home prices per square foot in most of the metros. Rents for office and retail space were found to be more mixed. While walkable urban places are being seen as making a comeback in the state, it’s important to note that most of them are still in a state of transition.

“It would have been unthinkable 15 years ago that these metro areas within Michigan – the center of the car and truck manufacturing industry – would have seen any form of investment and development in walkable urban places,” said Chris Leinberger, president of LOCUS, the Charles Bendit Distinguished Scholar and Research Professor at GWSB and chair of the GWSB Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis. “This shift to walkable urbanism presents the opportunity for real estate developers, investors, land use regulators, public sector managers, and residents to create economic opportunities while achieving environmental sustainability and ensuring a mix of incomes in these places. Walkable urban places also yield much higher tax benefits for local governments and the State of Michigan.”

National polls have shown that up to half of the population wants to live in a walkable place, yet only eight percent of the total housing stock in the Michigan metro areas is walkable, whether in the central cities or urbanizing suburbs. Furthermore, people under the age of 35, particularly those with college degrees, prefer walkable urban places. Attracting and retaining these educated young professionals is critical for economic development in Michigan.

“As this new research demonstrates, places like Downtown Birmingham, Main Street—Ann Arbor, and Downtown Grand Rapids illustrate the full potential of walkable urbanism to create value,” said Mark Wyckoff, senior associate director of the Land Policy Institute at Michigan State University, a partner in the report. “While Downtown and Midtown Detroit have demonstrated rapid revitalization over the past five to seven years and a promising future is seen in Lansing with a new bus-rapid transit corridor, many potentially walkable urban places in Michigan have not yet actualized their potential.”

The report ranks Michigan WalkUPs with platinum, gold, silver or copper ratings on both economic and social equity metrics. On the economic side, high-ranking places have reached “critical mass,” a point at which enough businesses and amenities are in place to attract residents without government subsidies. Top platinum level WalkUPs include Downtown Birmingham and Main Street—Ann Arbor. At the other end of the spectrum, on the lowest copper level, are areas such as Downtown Dearborn East and Downtown Bay City. These WalkUPs have the potential to become vital walkable urban places but may need public support and/or a pioneering developer to realize it.

The WalkUPs are also ranked on a first-of-its-kind social equity performance metric, measured by accessibility/opportunity and affordability. Places such as Midtown Detroit- Cass Park District, Downtown Grand Rapids and Downtown Lansing rose to the top with platinum social equity ratings indicating they offer a mix of both moderately priced housing and easy access to employment. On the other side of the spectrum, areas such as Downtown Northville, Downtown Flint and Downtown Battle Creek received the lower copper rankings.

Gary Heidel, chief placemaking officer at the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) said, “We’re seeing many of the walkable urban places across these Michigan metros offering a strong combination of both economic opportunity and affordability compared to the drivable suburbs. However, as walkable development continues to grow, this may generate concerns over gentrification and displacement of low-income residents. Establishing plans in advance of this gentrification to preserve affordable housing is critical.”

The report calls for continued support and management by local leaders, patient investment capital, and federal, state and local government in order to continue the progress towards walkable urbanism throughout Michigan. Now, more than ever, there’s a strong need for pioneers who can lead the way. In addition, an investment in rail transit throughout the state, where there is currently very little, will help propel the development of walkable urban places.

To see the full list of land use types, as well as the list of WalkUP economic and social equity rankings, download the report at http://www.smartgrowthamerica.org/research/the-walkup-wake-up-call/.

The WalkUP Wake-Up Call: Michigan will be unveiled in Detroit at LOCUS’s Michigan Leadership Summit: Closing the Next [Smart Growth] Deal on June 23, 2015. At the Summit, Regional Leadership Awards will be presented to Crosswinds Communities and the Gillespie Group, two real estate developers or investors who have demonstrated exemplary commitment to public leadership and development for walkable, sustainable development. To find out more information about the 2015 LOCUS Michigan Leadership Summit and the Regional Leadership Award recipients, visit www.locusdevelopers.org/leadership-summit.

The WalkUP Wake-Up Call: Michigan was funded by MSHDA, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), and ten Michigan-based foundations.




Beginning June 22, Detroit will host Gil Penalosa (photo above), an internationally renowned livable city adviser who is passionate about creating vibrant and healthy communities.

Gil—whose mantra is “Every city should have a law of two words: Pedestrians First!”—founded 8 80 Cities, a nonprofit dedicated to the transformation of cities into places where people can walk, bike, access public transit and visit vibrant parks and public places.

Many community partners, including Knight Foundation, are joining the conversation and hosting events. Others include Jefferson East, Inc., the Wayne State University Office of Economic Development, City of Detroit General Services Department, Grosse Pointe War Memorial, Detroit Future City, Community Development Advocates of Detroit and more.

Gil’s work dovetails with our efforts here at Knight Foundation to make cities like Detroit better places to live. To do that, we invest in civic innovators who help cities attract and keep talented people, expand economic opportunity and create a culture of engagement. Designing places to achieve these goals is crucial to city success. Come hear how we can do that in Detroit. There are multiple opportunities the week of June 22 to see and hear from Gil and 8 80 Cities.

Monday

• “Detroit Today” on WDET-FM. 9-10 a.m.  Listen in as Gil Penalosa guests on WDET’s “Detroit Today” to kick off the week of Move Detroit activities.

Tuesday

• Walking tour: “Envisioning the Beltline Greenway.” 10-11 a.m. Location: Gleaners Community Food Bank (2131 Beaufait, Detroit 48207) Register for event here.

• Workshop: “Great Streets!” 11:15 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Location: Gleaners Community Food Bank (2131 Beaufait, Detroit 48207) Register for event here.

• Keynote lecture/panel: “We Are All City Builders: How to Create Vibrant, Inclusive and Innovative Cities for All.” 5:30-8 p.m. Doors open at 5:30 p.m., keynote and conversation at 6, Reception at 7:30. Location: Community Arts Building (450 Reuther Mall, Wayne State University)  Register for event here.

Click HERE For The Entire List Of Events! 




Why go now?

Detroit's balmy evenings are ideal for strolling on riverside paths and sitting on brew pub decks. That is, after you've visited the landmark exhibition, "Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo in Detroit", at the Detroit Institute of Arts (1), which explores the year the artist couple spent here in the Thirties.

The city has been decaying for decades, but is now in the early stages of an exciting renaissance. "Detroit is finally coming back" is the constant refrain from upwardly mobile young people who cycle around Motor City and frequent its new bars, cafés and designer shops.

And this week, Virgin Atlantic (0344 209 7777; virgin-atlantic.com) introduces a daily, year-round Heathrow-Detroit flight, in an expanded partnership with Delta.

Touch down

Detroit is one of the main hubs for Delta (0871 22 11 222; delta.com) which, along with Virgin, flies here non-stop from Heathrow.

As a city dedicated to the motor car, public transport is lamentable. Bus No 125 (smartbus.org; $2/£1.35 fare) connects the airport to downtown, but it's infrequent, and makes 125 stops en route. A new shuttle van operated by Skoot (001 855 937 5668; rideskoot.com) charges $23pp (£15). It departs every 30 to 45 minutes but it's best to reserve ahead. McNamara Ground Transportation Center can advise about taxis (around $60/£40 to downtown) and car hire.

From their hub at the sail-roofed Rosa Parks Transit Center (2), city buses (detroitmi.gov/ddot) serve major thoroughfares like Woodward (No 53) and Michigan Avenue (No 37). The basic fare is $1.50 (£1). Construction of the new M-1 Rail streetcar along Woodward Avenue is due to finish in late 2016.

Get your bearings

This city's glory is its setting on the mighty River Detroit that separates the US from Canada. Downtown is roughly encompassed by the People Mover, a driverless overhead train that does three-mile city loops every four minutes ($0.75/50p).

The main thoroughfare is Woodward Avenue, which goes north to the museum district and increasingly gentrified Midtown. The old Corktown neighbourhood, west of downtown, and the vibrant Eastern Market (3) are accessible by bike, bus or on foot.

The tourist office (4) on the 10th floor at 211 W Fort Street (001 313 202 1800; visitdetroit.com; 9am to 5pm weekdays, closed weekends) is a convention bureau but it will give you a VisitDetroit guide and a good map.

Check in

The Inn on Ferry Street (5) at 84 E Ferry Street (001 313 871 6000; innonferrystreet.com) occupies several Victorian mansions in leafy residential Midtown. Rooms are comfortable and elegant, and the buffet breakfast is generous. A free shuttle runs within a five-mile radius. Double rooms from $169 (£111), B&B.

Westin Book Cadillac (6), downtown at 1114 Washington Boulevard (001 313 442 1600; bookcadillacwestin.com), has revived one of Detroit's landmark 1920s skyscrapers. The standard rate for a double, without breakfast, is $270 (£178) though third-party websites can show rates under $150 (£100). Rooms on higher floors have good views and less noise.

Through Airbnb (airbnb.co.uk/rooms/2938617) you can stay in the guest room of a lovingly renovated 19th-century mansion at 82 Alfred Street (7), which featured in Jim Jarmusch's 2013 film Only Lovers Left Alive. Double from £97, without breakfast.


Day one

Take a ride

The flat terrain and riverfront bike path make cycling easy and fun. Wheelhouse Detroit (8) at 1340 Atwater Street (001 313 656 2453; wheelhousedetroit.com; 10am to 8pm Monday to Saturday, 11am to 5pm Sunday) rents bikes for $15 (£10) for two hours (half price Tuesday and Thursday) or $25 (£17) for a half-day.

Whizzing east along the riverfront for 15 minutes brings you to MacArthur Bridge, which crosses over to Belle Isle (9) (belleisleconservancy.org), an island park where you can visit the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory (10am to 5pm, Wednesday to Sunday) and the Beaux Arts aquarium (weekends 10am to 4pm), both free of charge.

Alternatively take the Dequindre Cut Greenway, a mile-long, sunken disused railway, exuberantly decorated with graffiti that emerges near the Eastern Market (3).

Click HERE For The Full Article!



TechTown Detroit is located in an old General Motors factory built in 1927. About 40 small businesses work out of the building.
TechTown Detroit is located in an old General Motors factory built in 1927. About 40 small businesses work out of the building.Jason Margolis/NPR


Many University of Michigan business students who have an entrepreneurial streak take Professor Jerry Davis' start-up class. Davis has lived in the Silicon Valley, he has a Ph.D. from Stanford University, and he has advice for young people: Forget the Bay Area.

"You spend a whole lot of your time on freeways. It's expensive, it's annoying. The weather is beautiful, but basically the Bay Area has turned into Los Angeles," Davis says. "All the things that people hate about LA are now true of the Bay Area."

And the home prices are worse. The median price in Silicon Valley now tops $1 million. In Detroit, it's $38,000.

That's appealing to Aaron Mason, a 36-year-old San Franciscan. "Having a yard, having a garden, starting a family, those kinds of things," says Mason, imagining a possible move to Michigan.

The city of Detroit doesn't have a lot of high-tech companies, but it is interested in attracting young tech entrepreneurs like Mason. He's well known among techies — he's helped launch four companies and has 70,000 Twitter followers. It's not just the lifestyle possibilities intriguing him about Michigan — he thinks it might be easier to launch company number five in Detroit.

"Coming from a place like San Francisco, real estate here is really expensive. And so to go to a place like Detroit and see that you have fairly cheap space, and an infrastructure that is already in place, it's a very exciting place to be," Mason says.

He says he likes the scrappy feel of Detroit's emerging tech community, one that is "still sort of getting up and off the ground."

Click HERE For The Full Article!
Click HERE For All The Behind The Scenes Photos and Interview!

Today 7-Eleven, Inc. unveils Faygo Rock & Rye Slurpee, the second Slurpee flavor inspired by Faygo Beverages’, a Michigan-based soda company, most popular flavors. Joining the Faygo Redpop Slurpee introduced in March, Rock & Rye Slurpee beverages will be available at more than 300 7-Eleven locations across Michigan and Ohio in June.

“Thanks to the outpouring of suggestions from Faygo fans and our partners at 7-Eleven, Rock & Rye just got a lot cooler,” said Al Chittaro, executive vice president of Faygo Beverages, Inc.  “For over 100 years, it’s been Faygo’s pleasure to give the people what they want, and when Redpop Slurpee drinks were introduced, Faygo fans made it very clear that Rock & Rye was the overwhelming favorite to be the next Slurpee flavor.”

Based in Dallas, 7-Eleven introduced the Slurpee drink in 1966 and estimates that more than 13 million Slurpee drinks currently are sold every month in the U.S.  However, according to 7-Eleven, its stores in the greater Detroit area sell more Slurpee beverages than any other 7-Eleven market in the U.S., making this region an ideal location to bring together its most-loved frozen treat and two of the Midwest’s most iconic flavors.

“We want to bring our customers the local products they love and grew up with,” said Nancy Smith, 7-Eleven senior vice president of fresh foods and proprietary beverages. “Rock & Rye is a long-standing hometown favorite in Michigan and Ohio.  We saw our fans on social media telling us they wanted more, and we worked with the team at Faygo to give our Slurpee customers more of what they love.”

“7-Eleven is a national brand, but each of our stores and franchisees are part of their local communities.  Celebrating local favorites is part of being a neighborhood store,” said Smith.

Rock & Rye was introduced in 1924, a popular addition to the original soda flavors concocted over 100 years ago by Detroit-based Faygo Beverages, then known as Feigenson Brothers Bottling Works. Trained as bakers, Ben and Perry Feigenson applied their skill with frosting flavors to sweeten bottled soda water. They delivered their freshly made sodas to local residents from a horse-drawn carriage on the streets of Detroit.  The brothers are often credited with coining the term “pop” as a synonym for “soda,” based on the sound their bottles made when opened.

Combining Faygo’s Rock & Rye with 7-Eleven’s Slurpee drinks is the latest in a long tradition of mixing Faygo flavors with popular recipes served in Detroit-area eateries.  The list of Faygo-inspired creations includes cakes, cookies and ice cream, as well as glazes and sauces for beef and chicken, and even as a marinade for smoked turkey, sliced and served on submarine sandwiches.

“We are always impressed by the creativity and enthusiasm of our fans, especially on social media, and I’m sure they won’t let us down when we look online to see their excitement about Rock & Rye Slurpee drinks,” added Chittaro.  “Besides, there are still over 50 Faygo flavors in our repertoire, and we suspect they will not be shy about weighing in on which Slurpee flavor should become their future favorite.”
A specially wrapped 2016 Fiat 500X, gets some last minute touch-ups before it will lead many of Michigan’s 300 same-sex couples as grand marshal of the Motor City Pride parade, on Sunday, June 7 in downtown Detroit. The parade is part of the two-day Motor City Pride festival, which is the largest LGBT gathering in Michigan

Each year, during the first weekend in June, Detroit is blanketed in the colors of red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple, celebrating lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) culture at Motor City Pride. The two-day festival, complete with a parade, is the largest LGBT gathering in Michigan.

As a key sponsor of the festivities and the lead sponsor of the parade, FCA US and the FIAT brand will celebrate its longstanding commitment to LGBT employees, communities, customers and issues for its fourth consecutive year on June 6 and 7.

A specially wrapped all-new 2016 Fiat 500X, the brand’s first all-wheel-drive vehicle, will lead many of Michigan’s 300 same-sex couples, who married on March 22, 2014, as grand marshal of the Motor City Pride parade. In addition, FIAT brand ambassadors also will showcase the brand’s exciting vehicles while providing giveaways for festival goers. The parade will begin at noon on June 7 in front of Chrysler House, located at 719 Griswold Street, and end at Hart Plaza in Detroit.

“We are honored to have such a prominent role with this year’s Motor City Pride,” said Jason Stoicevich, Head of FIAT Brand North America. “Supporting the LGBT community and the diversity of all of our customers is paramount to the FIAT brand. I am proud of what FCA US and the brand have achieved in creating an inclusive work culture, a culture that helps generate vehicles that resonate with diverse buyers and communities.”

The horsepower behind the FCA US sponsorship of Motor City Pride is its LGBT Employee Resource Group: the Gay and Lesbian Alliance (GALA). GALA is one of six groups that enable FCA US employees to celebrate their special attributes together, while bringing awareness and value through volunteer and charitable activities.



Motor City Pride is empowered by the support of FCA US and the FIAT brand, helping to amplify the growth and significance of this annual event,” said Dave Wait, Chairperson – Motor City Pride. “We are so thankful for this collaborative partnership, sharing the drive to achieve full equality and respect for all people in Michigan.”

FCA US was a leader among U.S. employers in providing domestic partner benefits to its employees in 2000 and has achieved a perfect score of 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign's (HRC) Corporate Equality Index nine times since the benchmark was established. The HRC is the educational arm of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, America’s largest civil rights organization, and is dedicated to achieving LGBT equality. The Company is the only automaker to consistently achieve a perfect CEI rating.

FCA US also is a member of the Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition seeking an update to Michigan's anti-discrimination law prohibiting discrimination because of sexual orientation or gender identity.


Krema will be celebrating with its namesake treat, the Kremnut.

Way more than a donut, Kremnuts are made-from-scratch daily by the experienced team behind Detroit's historic Astoria Bakery. Layers (81, in fact) of airy croissant dough, formed into a round and lightly fried, are filled with house-made custards, fresh fruits, or classics like Nutella.

Several varieties are available daily, while others rotate with seasons and availability. Guest favorites include the Crème Brule Kremnut, Apple Cinnamon Kremnut, and Nutella Kremnut.

In honor of National Donut Day, Krema is offering guests a complimentary coffee beverage with the purchase a Kremnut*.  (*Friday, June 5 only).

Krema is located at 531 Monroe Street in Greektown, and open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. (midnight on weekends).
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