What Will It Take to Move Detroit's Holdout Homeowners?

Marooned in an ocean of crumbling homes, declining city services, stray dogs, and crime, as many as 10,000 Detroiters live in areas that are unlikely to rebound. What incentives can the city devise to get them to relocate?

"Detroit, which filed the largest U.S. municipal bankruptcy on July 18, has almost 150,000 vacant parcels and 700,000 people on 139 square miles (360 square kilometers) after losing more than half its population since the 1950s," writes Mark Niquette. The city's long-term vision for recovery, Detroit Future City, recommends consolidating services in some areas while converting other residential neighborhoods to parks and farms. 

As Detroit looks to places like New Orleans for ways to encourage people living in forlorn areas to relocate to new neighborhoods, rather than forcing them to, convincing reluctant homeowners like Dorothy Wafer will be a difficult task.

“I might live in a ghetto, but I’m not a ghetto person,” said Wafer. “This is what I know, and I don’t want to move.”

Full Story: Detroiters Living Amid Ruins Resist Moving as City Reorganizes


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