Few people recognize the growth that is occurring in Detroit and its surrounding cities. Between the auto industry layoffs and the plethora of decaying buildings, the mainstream media has painted a picture of disaster and despair. Contrary to those reports, there are thousands of individuals working hard to turn Detroit around. Some of them manufacture new televisions -- others produce components for new watches. Many of them will help a major automaker complete its IT transformation .
Then there are the dozens of men and women that have helped Benzinga transform into a dynamic and innovative financial media outlet.
"It is crazy to think that two-and-a-half years ago this started in my basement," said Jason Raznick, the President and co-founder of Benzinga. "Now we're in an 8,000 square foot office with almost 30 people."
Raznick, who said that Benzinga has a "really big vision" for the future, was one of five Detroit entrepreneurs who spoke on a panel at Opportunity Detroit this week. He was joined by John Fikany, the VP of Microsoft's (NASDAQ: MSFT ) U.S. commercial sector; Michael Webster, Executive VP of Kelly Services; Nathan Labenz, co-founder of Stik.com; and Shinola's Jacques Panis.
"Us being in Michigan, we feel like we have something to prove much more than if we were in another state," said Raznick. "I don't know if we work harder but we think we do. There are guys that are in the office throughout the night."
Raznick spoke proudly about Benzinga's partnership with Microsoft. "John from that little company, Microsoft, became a client of ours for the Windows 8 launch," he said. "We're one of the main [financial sites] there alongside Reuters and The Wall Street Journal. We have competitors. The only way that happens is that we outwork our competition, and we do that time and time again. That's why Microsoft came to us for more and more stuff. We're building really cool things."
Ultimately, Raznick said that Benzinga's goal is to "change the investment game."
Click HERE to read the full article!!!
Welcome to SPD's Cover of the Day, a portfolio of brilliant magazine and newspaper cover design from around the world. Its time to choose your favorite of the year! Round 1 starts with covers from January, February, and March (in alphabetic order). Look for Round 2, 3, and 4 in the coming days. Then come the finals!
Click HERE to see all the covers and vote for Boat Magazine's Detroit Cover!
The city of Detroit is turning red to raise awareness of the final days metro Detroiters can donate to The Salvation Army’s 2012 Red Kettle Campaign, which ends when red kettles leave storefronts across metro Detroit on Christmas Eve.
The second annual Paint the City Red celebration kicked off at 12:01 a.m. Monday, Dec. 17 when the General Motors Renaissance Center began glowing red. The Detroit skyline’s most identifiable riverfront building will beam The Salvation Army’s iconic red shield from its main electronic sign on the center’s tallest tower through Christmas Day. The bands around each tower will also glow red for the duration.
The Ren Cen going red is a precursor to Paint the City Red festivities slated for Friday, Dec. 21 when:
the Compuware and Chase Buildings will join the Renaissance Center in sporting a rosy glow.
· several of Detroit’s most beloved churches will simultaneously ring their bells for one minute at 9:50 a.m. Scheduled to ring are: Cathedral of St. Paul, Mariner's Church of Detroit, Old St. Mary's, St. Bonaventure, St. Florian, St. Francis D’Assisi, St. John's Episcopal and St. Joseph Sweetest Heart of Mary.
· bell ringers will man red kettles throughout the workday at the Griswold Street entrance of the historic Guardian Building in the heart of downtown Detroit’s central business district.
The centerpiece of the Paint the City Red observance is a lunchtime celebration in Campus Martius Park from 11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 21. The Salvation Army is partnering with Quicken Loans to host a variety of activities around the downtown Detroit outdoor venue, including:
Noon – 1 p.m. - a friendly bell-ringing competition for red kettle fundraising bragging rights among Quicken Loans’ top executives, including Bill Emerson, CEO; Mike Lyon, vice president of operations and Tim Birkmeier, vice president of banking. Jeff Eisenshtadt, CEO of Title Source will also join in the bell ringing contest.
11 a.m. - 2 p.m. - a gathering of food trucks serving fresh fare, including fan favorites El Guapo and Mac Shack. Refreshments will also be available from Campus Martius’ Arctic Zone.
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. - appearances by the Detroit Tigers’ mascot Paws and the Detroit Lions’ mascot Roary
Noon – 12:30 p.m. - an appearance by cast members of “Jersey Boys,” who’ll sing carols, ring bells and pose for photos with red kettle donors Noon – 1 p.m. - a live performance of holiday classics by The Salvation Army Brass Band
In addition, the Campus Martius Park ice rink will be hopping from noon – 1 p.m. as Quicken Loans team members lace up for an open skate and warm up with hot chocolate, courtesy of the mortgage company.
Capturing it all will be WWJ Newsradio 950, which will share live interviews and reports from Campus Martius Park from 11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. The station will also air feature interviews with Salvation Army officers and clients throughout the day to encourage public donations during the final days of the 2012 Red Kettle Campaign.
“We invite everyone to rally together with us to Paint the City Red in support of our 2012 Red Kettle mission,” said Major Mark Anderson, General Secretary and Metro Detroit Area Commander of The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit. “This is the home stretch of our campaign and we’re relying on the community to help us reach our $8.5 million goal.”
Paint the City Red revelers looking to continue the celebration can visit Somerset Collection CityLoft, located two blocks north of Campus Martius Park at 1261 Woodward. Cityloft, and the entire 1200 block of Woodward between Grand River and State, will be open for last-minute shopping from 12 p.m.-9 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 21. Merchandise from 40+ Somerset pop-up stores and quirky outdoor retailer Moosejaw will be available for shoppers to find the perfect gift for that special someone.
To make a tax deductible contribution to The Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign:
· Drop a donation into one of nearly 450 red kettles at storefronts across metro Detroit through Dec. 24, or Christmas week at area Kroger and Busch Fresh Food Market locations, which will continue hosting red kettles through Dec. 29
· Visit www.salmich.org · Call 877-SAL-MICH · Text "GOODMICH" TO 80888* (an automatic $10 donation) · Send a check or money order, made payable to The Salvation Army, to: 16130 Northland Dr., Southfield, MI 48075
Rock Ventures today announced the purchase of five additional properties, wrapping up a year in which it acquired eight buildings totaling 630,000 square feet of commercial space.
The newest acquisitions bring Rock Ventures’ downtown Detroit real estate investments to 15 buildings totaling 2.6 million square feet of commercial space, and three parking structures for a combined 3,500 parking spaces.
In addition, Rock Ventures broke ground on a 33,000 square-foot specialty retail development and 10-story parking garage last month, renovated 633,000 square feet of commercial space, and located 45 companies to the city, including Twitter, Chrysler, Metro-West Appraisal, and numerous technology related start-ups. Rock Ventures’ family of companies, including Quicken Loans and Title Source, has brought 7,000-plus people to work in downtown Detroit since August 2010.
“It has been an exciting year of opportunity in Detroit,” said Dan Gilbert, Founder and Chairman of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans. “Our focus in 2013 will be on the three R’s – residential, rail and retail – all of which are vital in creating the vibrant, thriving urban core that we all envision.”
Rock Ventures’ newest building acquisitions include:
1201 Woodward - Kresge Building
The 54,000 square-foot property built in 1891 was home to the former Kresge store. The nine-story building, located on the northwest corner of Woodward Avenue and State Street, will be renovated to accommodate first floor retail and either office or residential space above. A portion of the first floor currently houses The Detroit Shoppe and Detroit Artist Market pop-up stores.
This five-story 30,000 square-foot building is located on the west side of Woodward Avenue, immediately north of the Kresge Building. Built in 1891, the building will be renovated and used for first floor retail and either office or residential space above. A portion of the first floor currently houses Santa’s Wonderland, a seasonal store specifically for children with proceeds benefitting Detroit Goodfellows, ensuring there is “No Kiddie without a Christmas.”
Located on the east side of Woodward Avenue between Grand River Avenue and John R Street, this three-story building was built in 1916. The 6,000 square-foot building is currently unoccupied, but will feature first floor retail with office space above.
1301 Broadway - Cary Building Lofts
The 20,000 square-foot building, built in 1906, is located on the west corner of Gratiot Avenue and Broadway Street. The five-story structure will undergo extensive renovations to accommodate first floor retail space with residential space above. · 1521 Broadway - Small Plates Building The 9,300 square-foot building is 100 percent occupied by Small Plates restaurant on the first floor with four residential loft apartments above. The five-story building is located on the west side of Broadway Street between John R and Witherell Street.
The building purchases were brokered by Bedrock Real Estate Services, Rock Ventures’ full-service real estate firm. Bedrock leases, develops and manages all of Rock Ventures’ buildings, and has helped locate more than 65 companies to downtown Detroit since August 2010.
“The need for retail and updated office and residential space in downtown Detroit is keeping Bedrock extremely busy,” said Jim Ketai, Managing Partner at Bedrock, adding that the firm has grown by nearly 60 percent in the past year to keep up with the demand.”
Best Mac and Cheese in the U.S. Every chef has a version of ultra-comforting macaroni and cheese, with nuances ranging from how many gooey cheeses can fit into a single batch to crunchy toppings like sourdough bread crumbs. Here, where to get the best mac and cheese in the country. —Justine Sterling
Slows Bar BQ, Detroit
Brian Perrone’s superrich mac-n-cheese is so intense that it has been called “a truly life-changing experience” by Man v. Food host Adam Richman. The signature side dish includes medium pasta shells, creamy béchamel sauce and mild cheddar cheese. For a final cheesy touch, Perrone grates more cheddar on top and broils it. “It is really quite luxurious,” Perrone says. slowsbarbq.com
Click HERE to see who else made 'The Best Mac And Cheese In The U.S.' List!
|He shoots: A student goes for a penalty shot in a game of basketball inside the Cass Tech sports hall as other players wait for the throw to be completed|
Ghosts of students past: Fascinating pictures of a derelict Detroit school... mixed with evocative images from its heyday Photos of Cass Technical High School in Detroit, Michigan, whose alumni include Diana Ross and Jack White
School moved to new building in 2005 which left original facility empty and it was later demolished last year Largest school in Michigan by 1942 with 4,200 students attending eight-storey brick and limestone building
From shooting hoops to eating lunch and from marching bands to disco dancing, these extraordinary photographs capture a bygone era in US education.
The amazing images of Cass Technical High School in Detroit, Michigan, from detroiturbex.com combine old pictures of school life with recent views of the abandoned building.
Cass Tech, which counts singer Diana Ross and rocker Jack White among its alumni, moved to a new building in 2005 which left the original facility empty.
Click HERE for more of these amazing photos on Daily Mail!
The Broderick Tower downtown is also in demand.
Developers say occupancy rates in these areas are at least 96 percent, spurred by young professionals, students and empty nesters who want an easy commute to school or work and a short walk to local cafes and bars.
“To us it feels like there’s an insatiable demand,” said Fred Beal, manager of Motown Construction Partners, which led the recent renovation of the 124-unit Broderick Tower downtown.
Built in the late 1920s, the 34-story building near Comerica Park had been vacant for decades, but is fully leased after opening in November. Penthouse units that are 2,300 square feet command $5,000 a month, Mr. Beal said, though most of the studios and one- and two-bedroom apartments rent for $2,000 or less.
To take advantage of tax credits available for renovating historic buildings, the apartments must be rented, not sold, but developers say the demographic currently testing the waters in Detroit — many young, first-time city dwellers — isn’t ready for the commitment of buying a condominium anyway.
These tax credits make it easier to renovate old buildings than build new ones, but one exception is the three-story Auburn building, which also opened in November. Located near Wayne State University in midtown, the Auburn has 58 apartments and 11 retail spaces, that are “leasing very well,” according to David Di Rita, a principal at the Roxbury Group, one of the building’s developers.
Retail tenants include a spinning studio, a bookstore, a Thai restaurant and a home goods store, Mr. Di Rita said, while the apartments — mostly one-bedrooms around 600 square feet — rent for “just south of $1,000 a month.”
The thriving apartment market in these neighborhoods is a bright spot in an otherwise grim financial picture for Detroit. Once the nation’s fourth-largest city, its population has dwindled and its finances are floundering. State officials have warned that a state-appointed emergency financial manager may be in the city’s future, so enticing former suburbanites to live and not just work or go to school in Detroit has involved some financial incentives. But a crucial factor is creating the thriving neighborhood hubs that places like San Francisco and New York have long offered.
Click HERE to read the full article on The New York Times!
Detroit Dog Park, an non-profit organization based in Detroit, has entered into a three-year agreement with the city of Detroit to turn Macomb Playlot into Detroit's first true off-leash dog park.
The three-year agreement will allow the organization to build and maintain an off-leash, enclosed dog park that is free of charge and open to the public.
The parcel is Macomb Playlot, a 0.7 acre park at the intersection of Rose and 17th Streets in Corktown. The project is part of the city's Adopt-A-Park program, in which community groups and grassroots organizations commit to restoring city parks that are underutilized or in need of maintenance in exchange for helping define what programs and uses the park will have. Macomb Playlot is a former playground that sits next to Roosevelt Park and the Michigan Central Depot in the heart of Corktown.
"This is a tremendous day for the Detroit Dog Park family," said Carly Mys, chair of DDP's Board of Directors. "We are excited about the opportunity to work with the city to build a dog park for the community, by the community, and can't wait to get started."
Brad Dick, director of Detroit's General Services Department, which oversees park maintenance, said the agreement is an example of the good works that can happen when groups collaborate.
"I think it is great when neighborhood groups partner with the city to tell us what they want - and it is even better when we can make something happen together," he said.
With a projected opening during the summer of 2013, Detroit Dog Park is seeking donations through Kickstarter, a crowdfunding platform for creative projects. Until Dec. 17, friends of the dog park can donate at http://kck.st/RJAFpq. The goal is to raise $15,000 to defray between half and one-third of startup costs. For information about the organization, including preliminary designs for the park, visit the Kickstarter page or detroitdogpark.org. For event information, visit facebook.com/detroitdogpark.
Detroit Dog Park is a not-for-profit organization that is dedicated to building an off-leash park for people and their dogs within Detroit city limits. Our goals are to revitalize a space for people and dogs to meet and play in Detroit, to partner with neighborhoods in cultivating community and economic activity for present and future Detroiters and to create, to transform and to grow.
AlphaUSA has a long history of serving its community and regularly helps with initiatives here in southeastern Michigan, including many local projects such as back-to-school drives, and high school scholarships. Alpha’s local commitment includes serving on community chambers of commerce, Rotary, and other civic, arts, and educational organizations. But, even though Alpha’s first commitment is to its Michigan region, when they learned through a Philadelphia customer of a national effort to rescue the historic ocean liner SS United States, they jumped on board.
AlphaUSA was approached by the Philadelphia-based SS United States Conservancy because Detroiters are known for their fundraising. Initially, they sought contact information for Lee Iacocca in the hopes the retired auto executive-turned philanthropist could help raise the needed revenue as he had for the Statue of Liberty restoration. But when they heard about the ship’s technological importance and the looming possibility that she could be lost forever, Alpha turned to innovative ideas gleaned from fellow Detroiters to propose and subsequently invent a new way to fundraise for historic preservation.
The Conservancy liked what it heard from Detroit and asked AlphaUSA to oversee the creation of what eventually became savetheunitedstates.org, an interactive online model of the ship that not only teaches people her history, but lets them choose, buy, and personalize any square inch of its surface for only $1. It was a monumental task coordinating the merger of ship's plans and historic facts and assembling a team of programmers able to divide the ship into tens of millions of square inches, making any one of them accessible within two mouse clicks. AlphaUSA orchestrated the project from start to finish in less than three months.
“Without AlphaUSA’s Detroit roots, this national campaign would never have become a reality,” explains David Lawrence, AlphaUSA’s CAO, who now serves on the Conservancy’s Advisory Council. Inspiration was drawn from outside-of-the-box ideas like Loveland's "Buy an inch of Detroit" and Erik Proulx's $1-per-frame producer rights for Lemonade Detroit. As a manufacturer, and part of the Detroit's innovative industrial legacy, the company was also drawn to what the SS United States symbolized. She is still the fastest ship ever built and is a monument of technological innovation, engineering know-how, and America's can-do spirit to accomplish anything.
Many Detroiters actively advocate for our city and stay plugged into the great things happening here every day. Like AlphaUSA, they can also bring our local-style of grassroots outreach to a national level and become a part of this online social media event by buying their own inch of the ship. Once this new technique for preserving our history proves successful, these same methods can be put it to use to save Detroit's own endangered structures.
AlphaUSA is a product development and design based manufacturer located in Livonia, Michigan. Founded in 1957 by WWII veteran George Strumbos, the company specializes in creating metal fabrications and assemblies including machined components, specialty fasteners, and low to high volume stamped products. AlphaUSA has received numerous quality awards and is a leader in its community having been named 2010 Large Business of the Year by Wayne County and the City of Livonia Chamber of Commerce.
Pewabic Pottery invites metro Detroiters to “shop local” this holiday season its annual Holiday Shopping Night on Wednesday, Dec. 12 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Guests can join in celebration for a night of tasty holiday snacking, live entertainment courtesy of the Jazz Merchants and great discounts. To top it off, shoppers can find the perfect gift for loved ones from a selection of beautifully handcrafted ceramics by more than 100 artists.
The night will be full of surprises with giveaways every 30 minutes, and "special purchases" available throughout the evening. Upon entry, visitors will receive a numbered ticket, entering them for a chance to win Pewabic items including ornaments, t-shirts, and even an iridescent vase valued at $100.
In addition to the great deals, Pewabic Society members will receive double their regular discount (up to 20%).
“The Holiday Shopping Night is a fun year-end celebration, filled with surprises, entertainment and holiday cheer” said Barbara Sido, executive director of Pewabic Pottery. “It’s a great opportunity for metro Detroiters to shop local and support community artists.”
Visitors can also take this time to view Pewabic Pottery’s annual holiday exhibition, Earthy Treasures, on display through Dec. 30.
Pewabic is a historic working pottery which is open to the public year round and offers classes, workshops and tours to children and adults. Pewabic creates giftware, pottery and architectural tile, showcases more than 80 ceramic artists in its galleries, and operates a museum store that features pottery and gift tile made on-site. Visitors are welcome, free of charge, Monday - Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. To learn more about Pewabic Pottery call (313) 626-2000 or visit www.pewabic.org.
Pewabic Pottery is located at 10125 E. Jefferson Ave. in Detroit across the street from Waterworks Park.
In observance of breast cancer awareness month, Buddy’s Pizza featured the Leon & Lulu pizza in October. The healthy, gourmet pizza came on a multi-grain crust with asiago, brick and parmesan cheeses, tomato basil sauce and was topped with shredded carrots, sautéed spinach, fresh broccoli and Italian spices.
For each Leon & Lulu pizza sold Buddy’s donated $1 to the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute in support of breast cancer research. Additionally, staff was given the opportunity to wear jeans on Fridays throughout October with a $5 donation as well as purchase a special Buddy’s t-shirt, all benefiting Karmanos. With an overwhelming response from Buddy’s staff and guests, Buddy’s Pizza was able to present Karmanos with a $3,000 donation on Dec. 3.
“At Buddy’s Pizza we strongly believe in supporting worthy local causes,” said Robert Jacobs, president of Buddy’s Pizza. “The Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute is a leader in cancer research and it’s based in our hometown. It’s a pleasure to partner with such a great organization.”
At the same time, Buddy’s Pizza was internationally recognized by Zagat, the world’s first provider of trusted restaurant ratings and curated restaurant reviews, as one of the top “10 pizza joints across the U.S. that are worth a road trip.”
The Zagat critic described Buddy’s Pizza: “. . . it’s square, it's deep-dish and instead of the sauce being on the bottom underneath the cheese, it sits atop the toppings in big, healthy blotches. . . the rich and buttery, but not too heavy crust is perfectly crispy and chewy, and the sauce is the perfect balance of sweet and savory.”
“We are honored to have our pizzas recognized by Zagat,” said Wes Pikula, vice president of operations at Buddy’s Pizza. “It’s exciting to hear they rank our pies as the quintessential Detroit-style pizza.”
For more information on Buddy’s Pizza, visit www.buddyspizza.com.
A one-of-a-kind, 24-foot Menorah designed and built by the highly acclaimed Nordin Brothers of the Detroit Design Center will be lit to celebrate Chanukah. Thousands are expected to head downtown for the second annual “Menorah Lighting in The D” that will also feature a free soup bar, donuts, dreidels, live music, ice skating, and more.
The Menorah is a traditional symbol of Chanukah, an eight-day festival, and is lit to commemorate the miracle of one day’s oil burning for eight days. “The public lighting of the Menorah is rooted in Chabad tradition and is celebrated in major locations worldwide, from the White House to the Eiffel Tower, so it’s only fitting that downtown Detroit be included for the second straight year,” said Itty Shemtov, Director of Education at The Shul.
Wednesday, December 12, 2012 from 5:00 p.m.- 6:30 p.m.
A crowd will gather near the Menorah located in Cadillac Square Park, adjacent to Campus Martius Park.
At the recent IDEO-hosted craft festival, Wunderfaire, I met Dustin Page, the founder of Platinum Dirt, an Oakland-based company that makes fashion accessories and jackets out of reclaimed leather automobile upholstery. At Wunderfaire, he had on display one of his VIN Jackets, a motorcycle-style jacket made out of (in this case, Cadillac) upholstery and parts. It not only used the leather from old Cadillac seats, it also incorporated its hood ornament (as a zipper pull), its embroidered wreath (as a sort of perfectly-placed crest), its metal logo and its metal VIN tag (as an adornment). The VIN Jacket is a special order and can be made with leather from Cadillac, Mercedes-Benz, Lincoln, BMW, or Volvo vehicles.
All of the Platinum Dirt products are available to order online.