Tough Times in Detroit, But Some Hope Remains

One in five Detroit homes is in foreclosure and asking prices are dropping to extreme lows. Many in the city question what lies in the future for the struggling city.
March 7, 2010, 9am PST | Nate Berg
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"Houses on sale for a few dollars are something of an urban legend in the US on the back of the mortgage crisis that drove millions of people from their homes. But in Detroit it is no myth.

One in five houses now stand empty in the city that launched the automobile age, forged America's middle-class and blessed the world with Motown.

Detroit has been in decline for decades; its falling population is now well below a million – half of its 1950 peak. But the recent mortgage crisis and the fall of the big car makers into bankruptcy has pushed the town into a realm unique among big cities in America."

But while homes sell for just a few dollars and desperate homeowners set fire to their houses to try to claim insurance money, some retain hope for a type of revival in the city.

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Published on Tuesday, March 2, 2010 in Guardian
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