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I wonder if in 20 years Highland Park will be a low-density, suburban-styled city of about 10,000? That's the direction it seems to be going in. I don't even think they know what they are shooting for, which can be a huge problem. Does anyone know if they have a masterplan? If not, that would be something crucial for them to have, regardless of whether the enclave heads toward a suburban layout, or and a more urban one.

That right there stresses the importance of what a mass transit line would be able to do. We need it, and we need it now!

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I completely agree. Look at how in Toronto, for instance, a city layed out a lot like Detroit, the business nodes along Yonge (i.e. North York) turned out. I'm not saying that it is necessary for HP to turn out like that, but a line running down Woodward would literally transform the city into something much better, and much more authentically Highland Park, like it used to be.

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I'm not sure if anyone here has explored Detroit using Windows Live Local. It's kinda like google earth/mapquest/maps.google.com, etch with a satellite image from overhead. However, there is a birds eye view feature, that is awesome at capturing arial pictures from around the downtown area. Photos are high res and views are possible from all 4 cardinal directions. It does take a little bit of getting used to orienting through the interface. Though it is slightly outdated (appears to be summer '05 (statler demo, YMCA construction as evidence) I still played with this for about 5 hours, nonstop. High speed internet is an absolute must. Enjoy!!

local.live.com

For some reason the "Bird's Eye View" is unavailable. Perhaps I need to update the software. Does anyone know the url for updates?

I was playing around with the bird's eye view (it only worked for Midtown and the north half of downtown) one day and then the next day it stopped working. This was a few weeks ago, and I noticed they had taken Detroit off the list of cities where bird's eye view was available. It appears to be working again, but still no bottom half of downtown and the images don't appear to have been updated.

Wolverine, I would love to get a copy of the print out of this if you are able to make me one. I wrote a quick script to rip all the high res tiles from Windows Live of greater downtown Detroit (up to New Center) and assemble them as giant jpgs but when I tried to get Kinko's to print it out for me they refused due to copyright. :whistling:

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I would hope they would take an incredibly active role in trying to catch some of Hamtramck's immigrant spillover. That really is the difference between the two, at the moment. Immigrants are what saved Hamtramck from the fate HP has experienced.

The problem that I see is that Highland Park's shared border with Hamtramck is quite small and it's entirely industrial. So it's not like people will simply move into houses that are right across the border, which they can do into Detroit to the north and east of Hamtramck. Not to mention a highway is basically Hamtramck's border to the west as well, further constraining residential expansion. In contrast to Hamtramck, HP does have some cool taller buildings that could one day be reused, plus it's right on Woodward. HP could definitely use a wave of immigrants...

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Hamtramck and HP do have many differences today, besides the current rate of immigration. Race and poverty level are big ones. So is the retail makeup and suburbanite attractions.

What are your ideas? Precedent for a city successfully building ethnic neighborhoods? The same tools could be used to preserve and strengthen the Hmong area in northwest Detroit and the small Vietnamese community in the southwest (somewhere).

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Highland Park has a huge collection of beautiful bungalows that I'd love to see renovated. There are a few small neighborhoods that have remained relatively intact. I don't know what the neighborhood is called, but in the southeast corner where all of the streets are named after states there is a beautiful collection of homes in decent condition with minimal abandonment.

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I think if the city could find a private investor to building a Campus Martius-type park (of course on a smaller scale), they could work on pulling things toward the center of this little enclave, and work outwards. I mean, there are some housing developments going up in Highland Park, but none of them seem to respect the layout and history of the city. Things still fill mis-mashed and un/under-connected.

There is only one thing I would think would ever pull HP out of the hole, and quick, and that is a major stop on a light rail line up Woodward. Otherwise, all the city can hope for is more suburban-styled and functioning developments reducing the historic density of the area.

Edited by Lmichigan
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Detroit isn't the only Michigan city having zoo troubles. Lansing's facing an $11 million deficit, and the mayor is proposing that the county help pay for it, seeing as how 70% of the zoo patrons are suburbanites. Sounds familiar? The difference is that Ingham County govermnet seems very receptive to the idea of helping pay for the zoo. It may come down to a vote on the November ballot; and with Lansing-East Lansing holding more than half the population of the county, it looks like this would pass very easily.

Not much to do with Detroit, at all, but the parallels are there.

Edited by Lmichigan
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L,

Please report any sweet city council outbursts... lansing may have similar zoo problems, but I bet they'd be hard pressed to match the all-star team at the Coleman A Young Municipal Center!

The county partnership sounds quite promising. Speaking with one of the transportation planners for tri-county, I was really surprised to hear how strong the region favors smart growth and an improved transit system. Oddly enough, it seems that Detroit (area) is one of the few cities in the state that isn't leaning that way.

Edited by tapezord
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Oh, they nearly had to have security drag a guy out of the meeting last week. The regulars, here, may give the Detroit regulars a run for their money. And our new mayor recently referred to one of our council persons as, and I quote "a worthless piece of crap," after that council person voted to delay the vote on one of the mayor's department head nominations, and then stormed out of the meeting. They got him on tape, and he publicly apologized. lol And, a few years ago one of our councilpersons was forced to resign for sexual harrasment.

It's your typical city council. :)

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Seems like once the trend of development downtown is corresponded to a return of the middle/upper class we will eventually reach a threshold that will make development of highland park and woodward enclaves inevitable. If these expensive lofts become popular and we see the re-population of downtown (which is beginning to happen), there is no way that the wealthiest suburbs which u can find on a northward trip down Woodward (Ferndale, Hunnington Woods, Royal Oak, Birmingham, Bloomfield) would allow that kind of desolation between a newly posh downtown and already wealth suburbs. For example. If you drive from downtown chicago to the northshore, you're not going to see anything like Highland Park. Similarly, once Detroit gets to a certain point of desirability something will have to happen in Highland Park. Right now once u cross from Ferndale it is not too bad. The roads are excellent (actually better than Ferndale), Palmer woods is right there, abandonment is noticable but not rampant on woodward storefronts. however, once you cross into Highland park you can see a drastic drop. Then once you get into midtown by Wayne's campus u again see a noticable improvement. THat will at least cosmetically be improved (starting w/ Model T) which will hopefully spill oer into surrounding communities. Im not saying Highland Park will turn into any perfect suburb w/in a city. However, it seems logical that if Detroit continues at its current pace, something will happen in HP

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I think we are still years away from seeing downtown spur that kind of improvement along Woodward. Its going to be a slow process but I think once we see things like the Hudson Block and riverfront finished you will see things really snowball for downtown and trickle down the Woodward corridor.

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I got classes otherwise I would be down there trying to get a ticket. Im really pumped about this team and this season. I think our pitching staff is going to be a lot better having a vet like Rogers anchoring it. Takes a lot of pressure of the younger guys, especially Bondermania. The hitting will be there and i see them being much more discipline under Leyland. I like that guy cause he doesnt take any crap. I cant wait for classes to be over, im gonna be at a ton of day games.

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