Saturday, August 7th, 2010

More Detroit Developments


Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
9 Comments » | Published in Art and Artists, Urban Planning  |  9 Comments

Am I boring you with my current fascination with Detroit? I just think it’s going to be such an interesting city to follow, and I’ve been soaking in every article I come across about what people are doing to redesign it and help its recovery. The latest article I read was in The New York Times this week, and it chronicled what a community of artists are doing to help the city, including selling off square inches of property to help create a feeling of ownership, however small. When artists start to flock to an area, it’s always the first sign of improvement. There’s a sense of a new wave of Robert Smithson types with a penchant for industrial landscapes. Is the next step for Christo to wrap it all up in a bright color? Will Todd Selby* be heading there to photograph these artists at home? It’s going to be really fun to watch. Check out the article here.

*Speaking of The Times and Todd Selby, there was a great feature on him this week. Check it out here.

Image by Fabrizio Costantini for The New York Times. There’s a great slideshow of ten of his photographs here. The caption for the image above reads “Ms. Michael bought her house, left, with green trim, for $10,000. Artists and activists have rescued this leafy block from blight.” In addition, Ms. Bridget Michael is hoping to turn her second floor into a long term visiting artists’ residence, and it’s currently occupied.

About Becky:
Hi, I'm Becky. I live in Atlanta. Besides acting as the Editorial Director here on Hatch, you can find me talking design over at Houzz. Make me happy — leave a comment!

About Becky

has written 1620 post in this blog.

Hi, I'm Becky. I live in Atlanta. Besides acting as the Editorial Director here on Hatch, you can find me talking design over at Houzz. Make me happy — leave a comment!



  1. liza says:

    August 7th, 2010 at 11:52 am (#)

    $10K! I wonder how much the red one to the left almost out of the photo was. This is much better than tearing it all down.

  2. Becky says:

    August 7th, 2010 at 12:02 pm (#)

    Another great thing they mentioned is a bit of urban farming going on in the backyards. The current need for so much tearing down does make me very sad.

  3. fromtheheart says:

    August 7th, 2010 at 11:11 pm (#)

    Detroit is a nasty city the rivers and lakes catch fire every now and than and it is becoming a run down chunk of hell. They can live there if they want and they better get a good security system.

  4. Roxanne Christensen says:

    August 8th, 2010 at 6:09 am (#)

    The system many urban farmers are using is called SPIN-Farming, which is a small plot farming system that outlines how to make money growing in backyards, front lawns and neighborhood lots. SPIN provides everything you’d expect from a good franchise: a business concept, marketing advice, financial benchmarks and a detailed day-to-day workflow. In standardizing the system and creating a reproducible process it really isn’t any different from McDonalds. By offering a non-technical, easy-to-understand and inexpensive-to-implement farming system, it allows many more people to farm commercially, wherever they live, as long as there are nearby markets to support them. A free calculator that shows how much farm income can be made from backyards and neighborhood lots is available at the SPIN website –

  5. Becky says:

    August 8th, 2010 at 12:50 pm (#)

    fromtheheart, the thing that interests me is how people are planning for this city that has seen brighter days, and working to make it better.

  6. Kellie Dobbie says:

    August 8th, 2010 at 7:08 pm (#)

    With the current improvements being undertaken by the residents (with a community of artists involved), I believe Detroit will gain back its glory in the near future. Living in a city with an urban touch is the lifestyle I’m dreaming of.

  7. John Manross says:

    August 9th, 2010 at 2:14 am (#)

    I also have heard of the rising number of hands-on urban farming enthusiasts in Detroit and it makes me sad that they’re in for a lot of tearing down and destruction in the near future. Hope to see Motor City’s former ardor in the next couple of years!

  8. Mildred says:

    August 11th, 2010 at 2:55 pm (#)

    I’d say “heartless” is a better name for that nasty person. FYI (that means “for your information”) Detroit’s river has never burned, and the lakes (the Great Lakes) are just fine. You’re getting your cities mixed up. that was Cleveland 30-40 years ago, and that river, the Cuyahoga, has been cleaned up. I’m glad to see everyone else with a positive attitude about the future of Detroit, or any city for that matter. It will take imaginative people who know how to work hard, but it’s happening in so many of the cities that seemed down and out. Not negative losers. I’m sure none of these cities will miss Heartless’ kind of attitude that sucks the air out of any progress.

  9. Becky says:

    August 11th, 2010 at 5:28 pm (#)

    Mildred, I have to add, I grew up in Cincinnati so we always made fun of Cleveland, mostly because of sports rivalries. I never visited until I was in a wedding there years ago, and I actually liked that city a lot – some smart planning was going on at the time and the city had improved greatly. Hope it spreads to Detroit. I’m finding it really interesting to watch.

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