Neigborhood Takes Urban Revitalization Into Its Own Hands

Faced with neglect from the city, the residents of Southwest Detroit have successfully begun to revive their neighborhood on their own.

"-- Jane García got tired of catching prostitutes turning tricks in the alley next to the nonprofit agency where she worked. Calling the police proved pointless, she said. An arrest meant the women would return 24 hours later, luring men from the saloon across the street called The Carnival Bar.

So García and others at Latin Americans for Social & Economic Development came up with a solution: They bought the building that housed the bar, shut it down, found housing for the squatters who lived in the decrepit apartments upstairs, then renovated the whole building.

This is community development in action, southwest Detroit style.

It's this kind of spirit -- residents, nonprofits and immigrant entrepreneurs banding together to oust slumlords, rehab ramshackle buildings and revitalize the business district -- that's helped the section of the city prosper at a time when other enclaves continue to crumble."

Full Story: A Detroit success story


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