Red Thread: This Is Randall Fogelman’s Detroit


Randall Fogelman is not dead or dying. But he did just turn 40, so there’s that. And for all the talk about Dan Gilbert and Kevyn Orr and, until recently, Mike Duggan, you could make the case that today it’s Randall’s Detroit that we’re living in. His experiences in Detroit for the latter 20 of those 40 years speak to a place that is surviving — thriving, even — as it sometimes feels the ground may open up and swallow the city whole.

School in the City. Randall transferred from MSU to Wayne State and moved to the Park Shelton. At that point, Wayne was closer in time to having considered a building that would straddle the Lodge Freeway for maximum commuter convenience than to opening its recent residence halls. The Park Shelton had yet to undergo condo-and-crepefication.

Cass and Willis. Developer Bob Slattery owned the buildings at three corners of Cass and Willis; Avalon Bakery was at the other. In 1999, Randall was Bob’s first employee, working on drawings, meeting with bankers, leasing and selling. The condos were the city’s first and home to techno titan Carl Craig. The Cass Corridor had not yet been brought into the Midtown brand.

Canfield Lofts. In 2000, Canfield Lofts came online as the city’s first for-sale loft project.

Eleven prospective buyers signed purchase agreements, and then the whole development almost fell through because there were no comparable projects to base the mortgages on. Ultimately, the then-president of then-National City Bank (then headquartered in Cleveland) stepped in to ensure the project happened. And good thing — Randall’s loft has gone on to host the first meeting for Steve Tobocman’s campaign (for the State House) and Ben Falik’s bachelor party (for good, clean pre-nuptial fun) and was featured on the June 1995 cover of Hour magazine’s Detroit Home mag.

Detroit Spice Company. When Randall started the Detroit Spice Company in 2000, two trends were in their early stages: macro demand for micro foods and putting “Detroit” on any and every product. Now, Detroit Greektown Seasoning, Detroit Mexicantown Seasoning and Detroit Middle Eastern Seasoning are available at Whole Foods and Bed, Bath & Beyond (and beyond!), but little did Randall know back when he launched DSC at the TasteFest that it would take his urban-planning career down an unexpectedly edible route.

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Sixty-seven years after Buddy’s Pizza originated the Sicilian-style square on the corner of Conant and Six Mile, the family-owned restaurants are serving up something new - in skinnier boxes. From gluten-free and multigrain crusts to vegan and antioxidant options, offering a variety of choices without sacrificing the famed Buddy’s flavor is nothing new to this Detroit institution.

That’s never been more apparent than it is now, as Buddy’s Pizza introduces Buddy’s Detroit’s Original Square Sicilian Style Thin Crust Pizza. Pizzas: Handcrafted from Buddy’s famous original dough, Motor City Cheese Blend and tomato basil sauce, four new pizzas have a thin, light, crunchy crust and bold new flavors.

They are:

· New Yorker – Pepperoni, roasted garlic, tomato basil sauce, oregano and grated Parmesan cheese.

· Mediterranean – Red onions, spinach, beets, tomato basil sauce, fresh dill and feta cheese.

· Pomodoro – Grilled scallions, roasted tomatoes, roasted garlic, tomato basil sauce, Asiago and grated Parmesan cheeses.

· Ultimate Italian – Italian sausage, red onions, roasted red peppers, roasted garlic, tomato basil sauce, Sicilian spice blend and grated Parmesan cheese.

The new Buddy’s Detroit’s Original Square Sicilian Style Thin Crust Pizza will be available June 24, 2013.

The new thin crust pizzas are available at the restaurant’s nine metro Detroit locations in Auburn Hills, Bloomfield Hills, Dearborn, Detroit, Farmington Hills, Grosse Pointe, Livonia, Royal Oak and Warren.

Each restaurant will celebrate Buddy’s Pizza Day and Buddy’s 67 years of business in Detroit, by offering customers appreciation cards. Once a month through the end of the 2013, cardholders can purchase an 8-square cheese pizza for $6.70 and add extra toppings for 67 cents each. Appreciation cards will be available through June 29, or while supplies last at each location.

The 2013 Chevrolet Rockin’ on the Riverfront concert series is kicking off on the GM Plaza with a metro Detroit favorite, The Romantics, on Friday, July 12. The concert, presented by Detroit’s #1 for Classic Rock 94.7 WCSX-FM, will rock the riverfront stage starting at 7:30 p.m. with opener Amy Gore & Her Valentines.

The original members of The Romantics – Wally Palmar, Jimmy Marinos, Mike Skill and Rich Cole – formally became a band on Valentine’s Day, 1977. Bred on the mean streets of Detroit’s east side, they were inspired by the British punk invasion and their hometown rock scene. Nearly 30 years later they are known for having created some of the most influential and beloved rock and roll of all time.

The Romantics cut their teeth on the Detroit sound characterized by the MC5, the Stooges, Bob Seger and the Last Heard, Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels, the Rationals, SRC, the Underdogs, and infused it with sincerity, irony, spontaneity and, of course, volume. They favored short hair, short songs and popularized red leather suits.

Their musical credo, then and now, was a simple, joyful affirmation, epitomized by the "Hey!...uh-huh!" intro to "What I Like About You," the unforgettable, high-energy track that still bridges generations, times and musical genres.

Spanning six consecutive Friday evenings, 2013 Chevrolet Rockin’ on the Riverfront offers more than free concerts. Located in the heart of the city, between the GM Renaissance Center and Detroit River, the event has become a summer destination for dining and entertainment in Detroit. Upcoming shows include:

July 19: America (A Horse with No Name, Sister Golden Hair)

July 26: Grand Funk Railroad (Some Kind of Wonderful, We’re an American Band)

Aug. 2: Great White (Once Bitten Twice Shy, Rock Me)

Aug. 9: Loverboy (Working for the Weekend, Turn Me Loose)

Aug. 16: Night Ranger (Sister Christian, (You Can Still) Rock in America)

Admission to the concerts is always free and no tickets are necessary. Viewing space is offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs and blankets, but outside food, beverages and coolers are not permitted. In addition, boaters on the Detroit River are welcome to anchor near the riverfront and enjoy the shows from the water.

Andiamo Detroit Riverfront will provide refreshments and food concessions at several locations across the plaza. Andiamo Detroit Riverfront and Joe Muer Seafood will accept dinner reservations before and after the concert and both restaurants offer outdoor patios overlooking the Detroit River and the Rockin’ on the Riverfront stage.

Convenient parking is available for $5 per vehicle, starting at 5 p.m., at the GM surface lot at the intersection of St. Antoine and Atwater streets, adjacent to the GM Renaissance Center.

The Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center is offering an incredible package during the concerts. The Marriott-Andiamo Romance Retreat package includes a four-course dinner at Andiamo Detroit Riverfront and overnight accommodations at the Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center. For reservations call (888) 313-5001 and mention promotional code WN9 or visit The Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center online.

Listen to 94.7 WCSX each week during Rockin’ on the Riverfront for a chance to win VIP seats, a catered dinner by Andiamo, and meet and greet opportunities with the bands. Additionally, new to the event this year is Veterans Row. Veterans are invited to log onto, fill out an online form sharing where he or she served or is currently serving and WCSX will pull weekly winners to sit in the 94.7 WCSX Veterans Row for each Rockin’ on the Riverfront concert this summer.

Fans are invited to watch FOX 2 in the Morning every week to enter a FOX 2 EXPOSED contest for a chance to win a VIP prize package, which includes two (2) VIP access wristbands and lanyards with front-row seats, dinner for two (2) at Andiamo Detroit Riverfront in the Rockin’ on the Riverfront VIP section (the evening of the concert only), overnight accommodations for two (2) at The Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center (the evening of the concert only, and excludes the July 26, 2013 concert), free parking in the Beaubien Garage located on Beaubien Street (the evening of the concert only), WCSX 94.7 FM freebies, and a band meet-and-greet (if available). To enter, access the online contest entry form on and follow instructions. The first contest will take place on Monday, July 8 during the morning broadcast.

In addition to Chevrolet, the 2013 Chevrolet Rockin’ on the Riverfront concert series is sponsored in partnership with Detroit’s #1 for Classic Rock 94.7 WCSX-FM, Quicken Loans, McDonald’s After Midnight, Metro PCS, and WJBK FOX 2.

For updates and information, visit and or

Any vision for far-reaching changes to Detroit is destined to meet considerable skepticism. After all, the mid-century urban renewal projects that decimated minority neighborhoods all throughout Motor City still resonate in the minds of many. And in the decades since, multiple well-intentioned strategies for reviving moribund sections of the city have failed, making the city something of a perpetual case study for urban planners. This year marks the launch of perhaps the most ambitious of these plans — Detroit Future City, a 50-year, philanthropy-backed endeavor meant to align local decision-makers at all levels with a coherent vision for the city. The plan takes on all the hot-button issues, from the question of whether to divest from certain areas and shrink the city’s footprint to how to support the informal, unrecognized businesses that are the lifeblood of many of the city’s neighborhoods. Detroit-based writer Anna Clark provides an in-depth look at the vision and the movement it is sparking in the vibrant city that urban planners sometimes mistake for a blank slate.

Click HERE for the full article! 

Stephen McGee for The New York Times
An ad hoc work space at Detroit Labs, a software developer that has grown rapidly as it shifts its focus to meet skyrocketing demand for automotive apps.

After graduating from the University of Michigan in 1998, Brian Mulloy followed the path of many of his classmates, fleeing his home state for a job in a bustling city. But after 10 years of working in technology start-ups in San Francisco, he has returned as founder of a company in Detroit’s budding technology sector.

Mr. Mulloy is part of a group of workers that Detroit is suddenly hungry for — software developers and information technology specialists who can create applications for the next generation of connected vehicles.

“You’re going to see developers set up shop in Detroit because they’re going to follow the money,” Mr. Mulloy said, “and there will be lots of money.”

Already, the money is flowing.

General Motors, newly flush with cash after emerging from bankruptcy, is on a hiring binge, quadrupling its information technology staff and recruiting software developers to create a spate of apps for its 2014 model-year vehicles. While the hiring is taking place across the country, many of the new recruits will be working out of the Detroit area.

The Ford Motor Company plans to fill 300 positions in information technology this year, said Laura Kurtz, Ford’s manager of United States recruiting. The Chrysler Group, which declined to specify its plans, said it would hire more entry-level workers and was focused on attracting a highly skilled work force.

For Detroit, the hiring is a rare bright spot in a city teetering on the edge of bankruptcy. For the state over all, the Michigan Department of Labor projects that job growth in software developers for applications is expected to grow 23.5 percent from 2010; for software developers for systems software, 36.9 percent, the highest of any technical job classification. Michigan’s overall average for selected technical occupations is 8.5 percent growth.

The demand for in-vehicle applications is a “substantial job generator with high-end pay,” said Donald R. Grimes, an economic researcher at the University of Michigan.

Beyond the three Detroit automakers, the push for the connected car is helping support homegrown technology businesses like Mr. Mulloy’s as well.

Detroit Labs, founded two years ago to create smartphone apps, is shifting to work with automakers to build in-vehicle apps. The company has grown tenfold since 2011, to 40 people, and aims for 60 workers by the end of the year.

“If you go to the coasts, you are one of thousands,” said Paul Glomski, one of its founders. “In Detroit, you have the opportunity to make an impact. It’s for real.”

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The full music lineup for the first-ever Oakaloosa Music Festival was announced today by festival organizers. More than two dozen of Detroit’s newest and brightest musicians will join headlining acts Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and Girl Talk, at the philanthropic music festival taking place on Saturday, July 27 from 12 noon to midnight at Detroit’s Historic Fort Wayne.

 Oakaloosa festival tickets are currently on sale through for $45 for general admission and $55 for a VIP Ticket, which includes a VIP entry, bar area and viewing location during the festival. A portion of the proceeds will help with the restoration and preservation of Historic Fort Wayne. Additional festival beneficiaries will be announced over the next two weeks on and via @Oakaloosa on Twitter and Facebook.

The complete festival lineup is listed below. Two open spots remain in the lineup, slated for the winner of the Oakaloosa Battle of the Bands taking place during five days throughout July. The preliminary rounds will be held at 9 p.m. at the Hard Rock Café in Detroit (7/12, 7/18) and the Pike Room at the Crofoot in Pontiac (7/13, 7/19). The final round will be held on Wednesday, July 24 at 7 p.m. at the Crofoot Ballroom. More details for the Oakaloosa Battle of the Bands, including how to enter or attend, can be found on

Broder & Sachse Stage (along the River)
• 12:00 – 12:45pm Great Divide
• 1:00 – 1:30pm Cousin George
• 1:45 – 2:15pm Michael Bermudez
• 2:30 – 3:00pm See Jane Rock
• 3:15 – 3:45pm Otto Vector
• 4:00 – 4:30pm Battle of the Bands Winner
• 4:45 – 5:15pm Dagda
• 5:30 – 6:00pm Of Mice and Musicians
• 6:15 – 6:45pm Robert James
• 7:00 – 7:35pm Paulina Jayne
• 7:50 – 8:30pm Trick Trick
• 8:45 – 9:25pm Kaleido
• 9:40 – 10:25pm Bone Thugs-N-Harmony
• 10:45pm – 12:00am Girl Talk

 Barracks Stage
• 1:00 – 1:30pm Battle of the Bands Runner-Up
• 1:45 – 2:15pm Dan Henig
• 2:30 – 3:00pm White Shag
• 3:15 – 3:45pm Ryan Waldie
• 4:00 – 4:30pm My Pal Val
• 4:45 – 5:15pm Doss the Artist
• 5:30 – 6:00pm HIR-O
• 6:15 – 6:45pm Red Pill
• 6:45 – 7:15pm Drew 32
• 7:15 – 7:45pm Bizarre
• 8:00 – 8:30pm The Infatuations
• 8:45 – 9:15pm Ro Spit
• 9:30 – 10:15pm Jessica Hernandez and the Deltas
• 10:30 – 11:00pm Royce Da 5’9
• 11:15pm– 12:00am  Freddy Todd

“The wide range of genres featured in the Oakaloosa lineup is intended to reflect the diversity of Detroiters themselves,” said Adam Bleznak, Program Director for the Oakaloosa Music Festival. “We are looking forward to bringing all types music fans from across Detroit and the region to enjoy a completely unique festival experience at Historic Fort Wayne, one of the most amazing historic gems in Detroit.”

In addition to music, Oakaloosa supports positive service projects in Detroit and is dedicated to building a festival of community engagement. The festival plans on hosting a number of non-profit organizations at the event, to spread awareness of their initiatives. During the festival, there will be a designated area where guests can learn about organizations and volunteer opportunities. Non-profit groups interested in being a part of the festival or for volunteer opportunities, can email to get involved.

Oakaloosa is organized and supported by Detroit Sports Zone, Inc., a non-profit group committed to exposing people of all ages to sports, cultural arts, mentoring, life-skill development and character building activities. Additional proceeds from the festival will be used to support the youth sports and mentoring programs provided through Detroit Sports Zone, Inc.

Oakaloosa is sponsored by Opportunity Detroit, Broder & Sachse, Asphalt Specialists, Inc., Real Detroit Weekly, Embarco Entertainment, The City of Detroit Recreation Department, Uber and Budweiser.

For more information and to stay up to date with all Oakaloosa announcements, visit or follow @Oakaloosa on Facebook and Twitter.

DETROIT (BLANK) CITY - Ep. 2 DETROIT DIAMOND CITY from Cass Corridor Films on Vimeo.


As for the states that are creating the most manufacturing jobs, the chart shows the ranking, as Michigan tops the list followed by Texas, Indiana, Ohio and Wisconsin.

Manufacturing companies in those states offer products and services that range from autos, furniture, tools, computers, computer software, toys, plastics, food, liquor, machinery, piping, chemicals, oil and gas.

"The auto industry will see some more jobs as foreign companies will invest in plants here," Cherin added. "And that means more jobs for making cars as well as in auto-related industries."

As for the future, the hope is that more companies like GE and Ford will bring jobs back home, said Chad Moutray, chief economist at the National Association of Manufacturers.

"As prices rise for labor overseas, we think American firms will find it more to their liking here," Moutray said.

Another advantage the U.S. has for manufacturers is lower energy costs—thanks in no small part to an ongoing boom around natural gas found in shale formations.

"Companies like that. With shale energy lowering costs, it's a huge advantage to them," he said.

More American exports would contribute even more domestic manufacturing jobs, Moutray said.

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A Girls Guide to Detroit from 4exit4 on Vimeo.

Detroit is a place that attracts a certain type of individual. Someone that's both tough and independent. That's especially true for the women who have chosen to stake their claim in one of the nation's most complicated cities. Fearless, talented, and ambitious, these women are shaping Detroit's future.

DIRECTED BY: Amanda LeClaire & Andrew Miller
CINEMATOGRAPHY BY: Andrew Miller, Mandy Moran & Jamin Townsley
EDITED BY: Andrew Miller
MUSIC BY: Eddie Logix Passalacqua Phantasmagoria Doc Illingsworth

Artist Adding To The Beauty of Detroit

Mom hanging out at the Start Gallery

"It's like NYC in the 70's. So the Empire State Building isn't fully leased. The solution is to demolish it? The city is on the brink of bankruptcy, so auction off the Statue of Liberty to the highest bidder?"

~My Mom. Her response after asking me to name items Kevin Orr has listed as "assets and potential salable goods" on his Detroit financial balance sheet.


All yoga participants receive free River Days admission after the session.

For more info, click HERE.


Tonight for Third Thursdays, 55+ galleries throughout the city stay up past their bedtime with extended hours, special events, live entertainment & amazing Detroit art.

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2013 River Days Festival 5K Is This Saturday!!!!!


Click HERE to register!

Detroit's Downtown Development Authority outlined the plan Wednesday, saying the project would cost an estimated $650 million. The plan is subject to approval by Wayne County -- $365 million would be funded through private investment and the $284 million in public investment.
According to the DEGC, the new development has the potential to create 8,300 jobs and have a statewide impact of $1.8B.

detroit joe louis monument

Everyone knows Detroit's got problems.

Friday morning, the city's emergency financial manager announced a suspension of some payments to unsecured bondholders.

Detroit topped the list of Forbes' 'most miserable cities' list this year.

The city's finances had to be taken over by the state of Michigan.

And former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick is likely going to jail for a long, long time.

But we're banking on the city getting its act together — and it's not just because things can't get any worse.

We've put together 25 signs Detroit is on the mend. Here's the summary:

In several major economic indicators, Detroit's rate of improvement has matched or exceeded the national average.

Kilpatrick aside, the city enjoys strong leadership

The auto industry is booming

And its sports teams keep winning titles.

Hear us out.

Click HERE to read the full article! 

DETROIT IS LIKE a canvas of chaotic art, a Gerard Richter or Pollock, standing starkly out against the blank white room that surrounds it. You find yourself drawn in, compelled to stop and gaze at it. Whether it’s ruin porn or the saga of Kwame or now our new state-appointed Emergency Financial Manager, it’s hard to look away.

The national press has duly documented this most recent drama, how Governor Snyder appointed Kevyn Orr as the Emergency Financial Manager to studiously go through the city’s books and find a way to stave off bankruptcy. Orr is like some old man in a ramshackle rooming house desperately digging through every drawer to find change for the fare as the sound of the last bus barreling down the street shakes the whole structure. It isn’t pretty.

Recently, Mr. Orr made the surprising suggestion the city pay its debts off by selling various treasures from the Detroit Institute of Arts. The thought being that an auction of a few pieces by Van Gogh, Matisse, Bruegel and Copleys might be enough to satisfy our hungry creditors. I’m sure he had a good reason for suggesting such a thing (after all, city services can’t really be cut much deeper. As the excellent documentary “Burn” points out, this is a city where the Fire Commissioner vacuums his own office). Still, the logic behind Mr. Orr’s tactic escapes me. Since a variety of legal constraints exclude the possibility of any works being sold, all his proposal did was make a lot of very serious people extremely upset. Perhaps that was his goal, who knows. I sincerely believe he has good intentions. As opposed to many here who view him and his mission with suspicion – many were angry at him before he even began –I wish him every success and I do not envy him his task.

His is an exceedingly difficult job. This week he is going into negotiations with the various institutions that own Detroit’s city bonds, institutions that include various large banks.

If he were to ask me, I would offer one very simple solution: Ask the banks to pay back the banks. Maybe not all of the debt, but they could cover a good chunk of it and without even having to write a check.

I am not talking about a loan; we are poor as church mice with nothing to mortgage really (except for perhaps José Valverde’s contract; seriously, we’ll give that to you cheap). Also, I am not asking for a favor or a kindness or an act of benevolence. And I am not talking about class war; no, nothing fancy like that. But there is a logic to why they should help us out, and it goes like this:

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MLB Pitches Youth Academy For Tiger Stadium Site

Photo Credit:

Major League Baseball is pitching a plan to bring the game back to the site of the old Tiger Stadium, although its vision for a MLB Urban Youth Academy at the corner of Michigan and Trumbull faces financial hurdles and lacks support from a key city official.

Darrell Miller, the league’s vice president of youth and facility development, said Monday that his office is considering several possible Detroit locations for an academy, particularly the old stadium grounds. He declined to identify the other possible sites.

The academy would provide free year-round baseball and softball instruction for youngsters and involve the construction of ballfields, indoor facilities, batting cages and offices.

Major League Baseball has built four such academies in Houston, New Orleans, Puerto Rico and Compton, Calif. Three other locations are under development in Cleveland, Philadelphia and Hialeah, Fla. Major League Baseball says more than 10,000 youngsters have attended its academies since the first site opened in Compton in 2006. Nearly 350 academy participants have gone on to play collegiate baseball or softball, and close to 200 have been chosen in the MLB’s First-Year Player Draft.

Miller said the league would like to establish youth academies in or near every city with a major league team.

He said it’s too early to put a price tag on a Detroit proposal, but said academies typically cost $3 million to $6 million. Major League Baseball will contribute a portion of the necessary investment — but not all. In January, Commissioner Bud Selig committed the league to a $1.5-million investment for a planned Reds MLB Urban Youth Academy in Cincinnati.

Click HERE for the full article!