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Chow

Corktown - "Detroit's Oldest Neighborhood"

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Nice pics, Eric! It's great to see another Detroit neighborhood on the forum. It looks like many of the homes have been restored...and being Detroit's oldest neighborhood, there are lots of great old homes there. There's even some rowhouses, which are quite uncommon in Detroit. Thanks for the tour!

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Yes, there is quite a bit of history. From the Corktown Citizens District Council website:

At mid-century, the Irish were the largest ethnic group among Detroit's newcomers, prompted by the Potato Famine in Ireland in the mid-1840's. The Irish moved into the near West Side. Since many of these came from County Cork, their neighborhood came to be known as "Corktown." In 1853, half the population of the Eighth Ward (which took in Corktown) was of Irish descent.

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I never would have guessed it had to do with County Cork. How cool!

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Nice pics. Is there any update on the future use of Tiger Stadium?

You are kidding, right? It's still sitting there, vacant and deteriorating quickly. :(

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Part of Corktown's revival actually has to do with the Tigers moving, although the businesses and residents initially thought the move was going to kill the neighborhood. Now it has forged its own identity separate from the Tigers and it does not have to depend on and deal with Tigers traffic for half of the year. At one point Mayor Kilpatrick was courting Wal-Mart for the old Tiger Stadium site (to much local opposition). The good news is that it was too small for Wal-Mart- the bad news is that it hinders local development by taking up a full block in the center of the Corktown retailing district.

It is interesting how pictures tell a story but only part of it. What is not shown is the despair or the indigenous people lined up near the soup kitchen. Corktown is one of the few true neighborhoods left in inner city Detroit that has not been seriously marred by urban redevelopment projects from the 50s/60s, although I-96 was paved right through the middle of it. The people that live there love the neighborhood and their pride and efforts show when driving through it. It does not look quite as urbane and walkable when strolling through it, however.

Great pics! d.

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There's even some rowhouses, which are quite uncommon in Detroit.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The southwest side between Mexicantown and Woodmere has it's share.

Yes, Corktown has a very diverse housing stock.

Anything from apartments,lofts,flats,rowhouses,townhomes,victorians.

Always liked that neighborhood.

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Yeah, Detroit just isn't a rowhouse city. The city was developed at the same time the automobile was, so there was never really the need to build dense like they did in other cities. The redevelopment that is occuring in midtown is bringing some new rowhouses though. :)

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