Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The wrong way to rightsize



Every week it seems someone new writes a column on rightsizing Detroit. Darrell Dawsey at the Time's Detroit Blog is the latest to endorse the idea:
So since the city is shrinking and de-industrializing anyway, why not attempt to exercise some control over the contraction, make money from it even? Target areas that have been largely abandoned and provide incentives for those who remain to move elsewhere in the city. Then fence off giant swaths of Detroit. Turn huge portions of the land over to nature, create preserves and parks and lease other portions to farmers who could use it to grow the fresh, affordable food -- and jobs -- that many of our communities could sorely use.



The simple truth is that no one in America should have to live with such blight, and the city's hand in creating it is shameful. That doesn't mean Detroit shouldn't pursue rightsizing, but if it's going to clear land, it needs to do something with it as it awaits redevelopment. Detroiters deserve better than this.

Update: For better photos of the neighborhood, go to Sweet Juniper. The contrast from the 1950s to the present is shocking.

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