City of Detroit, Detroit, MI
A growing Detroit neighborhood invests in a future inspired by cultural heritage
The West Vernor Corridor Neighborhood Framework planning effort honors the large amounts of time, thinking, and resources that community members invested in planning neighborhood improvements, through more than twenty planning initiatives over the past five to ten years. The Neighborhood Framework takes this community investment further—focusing on removing the barriers that have prevented good ideas and intentions from producing results in this community of more than 35,000 people. It positions the City of Detroit as a new partner to community organizations in Detroit’s largest Hispanic community, investing in high-impact public realm, housing, and retail revitalization projects. The Neighborhood Framework heralds the City’s renewed focus on neighborhood revitalization.
Community residents, business and property owners, organizations, and other stakeholders participated in a bilingual process to verify community priorities and discuss potential solutions to important challenges. Topics studied included public open space, streetscape, housing, neighborhood retail, and the impacts of heavy truck and rail activity on the community. Confirmed project initiatives celebrate the West Vernor Corridor’s rich cultural life, using it as an asset to enhance quality of life and economic opportunity. They also build upon detailed analysis of real estate market potential and development economics to harness re-emerging housing market demand to stimulate new infill construction and rehabilitation of vacant structures. Updates to City zoning and truck route policies will help the area remain an important job center while adding mixed-use development that leverages and extends its walkability.
Goody Clancy’s public realm initiatives for West Vernor neighborhoods—including a new fountain and plaza inspired by traditional Mexican zocalos, and a shared pedestrian/vehicle street in Mexicantown’s destination restaurant district—were among those highlighted for investment by Mayor Michael Duggan in his 2018 State of the City address. In parallel, the city is offering selected publicly-controlled sites for mixed-income housing development, to support inclusive economic and community growth in this resilient Detroit community.