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Downtown Expressway's Days Are Numbered in Detroit

Detroit will soon join the ranks of cities that have ripped out high-speed freeways from their urban core.
December 5, 2017, 12pm PST | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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I-375 severed Downtown Detroit from surrounding communities, and the Michigan Department of Transportation will try to undo some of the damage.

"After years of study and debate, the Michigan Department of Transportation is moving ahead with plans to rip out Detroit's I-375 expressway and restore a surface street there," reports John Gallagher.

"I-375 runs south from I-75 along the east side of downtown," adds Gallagher. "The creation of I-75 and I-375 a half-century ago destroyed the historic African-American neighborhood known as Black Bottom, an episode that remains a painful memory for many older black Detroiters."

The decision to remove I-375 began with discussions that began in 2013, also reported by John Gallagher and picked up by Planetizen at the time. MDOT is unlikely to start ripping pavement out until 2022, and the whole project is still dependent on funding and planning details. The article includes a rendering of the pedestrian sidewalks, bike lanes, and landscaped public space that will replace I-375 for a mile near the Detroit waterfront and some of its most iconic Downtown buildings.

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Published on Tuesday, December 5, 2017 in Detroit Free Press
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