Blog 3 – Gentrification in Detroit

This is an article about Ford buying the Michigan Central Depot and their plans to restore it. The tone of the article really struck me because it talks about how Ford is helping the “resurgence of Detroit,” and how many new jobs will be brought to Corktown because of this renovation. After reading How to Kill a City, I couldn’t help but wonder how people don’t realize everyone being left behind and pushed out in this boom of economic growth throughout a very specific, small section of Detroit.

It’s odd to think that a little more than a month ago, I probably would’ve read this article and thought how wonderful it was that Ford was investing so much in Detroit. However, now I think about all the social injustices this investment will lead to. The article even mentions how this renovation will help “small businesses,” but it never mentions that these businesses are by no means local. This will draw new people to Detroit which, of course, can be seen as growth. But how can we continue to celebrate this so-called rebound of Detroit when so many current residents of Detroit see none of the benefits and continue to be forced out of their homes?

I find myself thinking a lot about how companies such as Ford and Quicken Loans can be more socially equitable when investing in Detroit, and I am frustrated that these companies seem to not recognize the injustices they are catalyzing. I wonder if their “hope” in Detroit is simply for advertising because, after all, they do get huge tax breaks to “invest” in the future of the city. I think it’s difficult for me to not think about these companies negatively when they fail to even address some of the negative impact they have on the Detroiters who were here before anyone wanted to invest in the city.

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