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Mojo

Post Super Bowl predictions

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I think a renewed interest downtown by everyone. People outside the area and suburbanites. Residential plans along the river might become larger and nicer and I think people realize the potential this city has. No matter what happens though, Detroit will go into it with some momentum and that we all can be proud of.

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I must say, my expecations were far exceeded. From a marketing standpoint, this is going to have a lasting effect on how the corporate world views downtown Detroit. I really think the city is going to see offers that it would have never thought it would have seen before.

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I'm looking forward to what will happen in the future. I think Detroit showed itself well, and I'm sure some good investment is sure to come. It's clear a few small incidents aren't going to deter people from coming to the city. I predict in the next 5 years we will have new buildings on the Hudson and Monroe blocks, and a ton of smaller residential projects. I'm positive the UA will find a buyer and that it will succesfully get redeveloped and the Book Cadillac will eventually get renovated.. I'm thinking the Metropolitan and maybe the Wurlitzer might get redeveloped, but I'm not sure. Anyway, this is an even more exciting time for Detroit. A brighter future is sure to come.

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So what does everyone think? Where do we go from here, and what do you see happening in the next 4, or 5 years?

More small events coming to town. This summer the Freep had a great piece about the Sweet Adeline national convention getting shut out of NOLA, so their organizers moved it to Detroit. Everyone raved over how nice Detroit was and how happy they were with it.

More conferences such as the Mich Townships Assn and Mich planning assn coming. Presently these tend to meet in GR (Amway Grand, year after year) or Mackinac Island (now there's an urban environment with lots of field trip opportunities). It would be nice to have support from the suburban hinterland.

Annual Winter Blast and similar events.

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Look for more convention business......City needs to move fast to replace or expand Cobo and make it state of the art. This will be good for Detroits resume. Most important of all....don't go back to business as usual attitude and spirit.

I am a firm believer in the power of suggestion. For far to long....Suburbs and Out State have been making bad suggestion, which became self fullfied because it changed peoples behavior and activity in the city. Now, the State, the Suburbs and City residents need to start practicing positive suggestion. Yeah, Detroit has issues....but talk up the good, while not ignoring the bad. Its amazing how Atlanta reputation never really got tarnished despite all the years when it has had one the the highest violent crime and murder rates in the nation. Despite that, the overall perception was positive and businesses and people flocked to the cities core making it vibrant in a Southern kind of way. Atlanta always embellished its positives....until the power of suggestion made them become realities. Michigan and Detroit, its residents, businesses and media should take a page from the Atlanta school.

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I'll be keeping my eye on two things: how the city respond to damages to infrastructures that were recently revamped (many haphazardly) and how quickly many first floor retail spaces that served as temporary stores/bars fill up with long term occupants.

For example, the recently paved sidewalks along Woodward from Campus Martius to GCP were poor due to not having enough sand under layer atop uneven asphalt base. It did okay before and city did a decent job fixing few spots that were damaged ahead of the last week. But it was clear today during lunch that there was just too much foot traffic for it to handle. There are now broken concrete paver blocks that sits unevenly all over the place. That part of Woodward is now a long tripping hazard. I saw about a half dozen people trip on broken pavers during a short walk from Campus Martius to Grand River Ave. Neither me nor my co-workers believe they will be fixed (properly) any time soon because 1) they may have to replace as much as 1/5 of the pavers and 2) we think it'll require resurfacing the asphalt layer (or replace with gravel) in order to provide enough depth to the sand layer. But I'm hoping...

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the city DPW should have the contractor come back out because its pretty obvious the work was not completed per plan. The way to go is to place a lift of sand, then aggregate base and then (maybe) a base course of asphalt. I think they only went with the sand and wearing course asphalt option which does not provide enough strength.

I was also a little disapointed with the new sidewalk ramps downtown. They really did not engineer those well by placing a low point at the ramp... where are the catch basins!?

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It would be great to get a replacement for Cobo....an expanded facility more in line with the expectations of meeting planners today.

It does not have to be huge.....Detroit will never compete with the "A" convention cities (Las Vegas, Orlando, Chicago) but they could compete with the "B" cities (Boston, Baltimore, Nashville, Dallas) with the right facility, and good management of the facility.

If thye city could also market an area, like Greektown, Harmonie Park, or whatever (XX), the way that cities market their unique attributes (the riverwalk in San Antonio, the strip in Vegas, Broadway/Times Square in NYC, The French Quarter in N.O.) to create a known destination within the city, it will only spill over into the surrounding downtown areas. When a visitor thinks of Detroit they need to think of "XX" not of the past issues, or what they think the past issues are.......so they (city and private developers) need to develop what "XX" is, and make it the best it can be, market the crap out of it, and make Detroit synonymous with it. My suggestion is to model the plan after the rebirth of Ybor City in Tampa.....

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For example, the recently paved sidewalks along Woodward from Campus Martius to GCP were poor due to not having enough sand under layer atop uneven asphalt base ... There are now broken concrete paver blocks that sits unevenly all over the place. That part of Woodward is now a long tripping hazard ... Neither me nor my co-workers believe they will be fixed (properly) any time soon...

Well, I'm glad to report that I was proven wrong. There was a crew working on a section of sidewalk in front of 1001 Woodward parking garage today. From the looks of it, they're going to re-lay all pavers - they took all of the pavers off in the section they were working on and were in process of scraping off every bit of sand that was underneath them when I walked by.

You could see just how uneven the asphalt layer was - one end was high enough that it left barely enough depth for the paver to sit so that it was flush with the curve while the other end would require at least 2 inches of sand to do the same.

I'm just glad they're doing something about it!

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That's good. Even before the Super Bowl there were quite a few loose pavers. Glad to see they are fixing the whole thing.

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I guess this is somewhat of a sign that the city is going to keep up with the SB improvements. Im glad to see that something is being done. I almost killed myself in front of that garage.

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