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  • Award
    2013 APA-MI Chapter Daniel Burnham Award for a Comprehensive Plan
  • Location
    Detroit, MI
  • Client
    Detroit Economic Growth Corporation
  • Collaborators
    Toni Griffin, Hamilton-Anderson Associates, Mass Economics, Stoss, Happold Consulting, Center for Community Progress
  • Status
    Completed 2013
  • Project Website
    Detroit Future City
  • Project Type
    Economic development strategy, comprehensive plan, policy

A comprehensive plan to guide Detroit for the next 50 years

Detroit Future City - the framework plan to guide policy and action across the City is the result of three years of collaboration across many experts both within and outside of Detroit.  Interface Studio worked on different aspects of the plan and, with Mass Economics, developed the plan's Economic Growth strategy to help boost employment in Detroit.  

A full analysis of Detroit’s current jobs and economic assets as well as a survey of over 11,000 acres of industrial land resulted in the identification of 7 key clusters positioned for economic growth.  Interface Studio examined the land and infrastructure needs of businesses in each cluster resulting in a set of strategies to maximize the use of industrial land, create jobs and establish a foundation for sustainable economic development in Detroit.  

A key aspect of the plan was the identification of core employment districts best suited for new investment and job growth.  Interface Studio identified opportunity sites based upon our database and worked with the team to create land use and development typologies as well as policies to guide the management of vacant, publicly-owned land.  

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There is only about 1 job for every 4 residents in Detroit.  This is almost half that of other cities.  Yes, the City has lost a significant number of people but the greatest need in the coming years is to grow the number of jobs.

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  • 7 the level of industrial utilization in detroit remains surprisingly high in comparison to peer cities
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  • 14 a developable land inventory of southwest detroit including potentially underutilized sites and slack space
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The work explored the job opportunities associated with specific sectors of Detroit's economy  

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  • 0 our extensive inventory of detroit s industrial lands bore witness to the dramatic trajectory of american manufacturing in the 20th century