Not All The News About Detroit Is Bad

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Mark Memmott is NPR’s supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he’s a resource for NPR’s journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization’s standards.Even as newscasts and news-sites are using Detroit’s bankruptcy filing to talk about Motown’s “meltdown,” we’ve found these stories:

— “What Detroit Has Going For It.” Brookings Institution fellow Jennifer Bradley tellsThe Washington Post that in the city’s “downtown/midtown area, along the Woodward corridor spine … there’s a lot of good stuff happening.”

“There’s new small businesses, there’s business incubators, there’s a rental occupancy of 97 percent,” she says. “There’s Dan Gilbert investing a billion dollars in buying up these great old properties in the downtown, and repurposing them for small businesses and start-ups.”

— “For Detroit, This May Be A Real Comeback.” MSN News writes that “described as the epitome of dire straits and decimated by financial ruin, the city is actually steeped in a promising revival. Really.” The story continues:

“Quietly, while some have sounded its death knell, Detroit is beginning to make a comeback, aided by an diehard group of entrepreneurs who see the city as a potential tech hub and a cadre of investors who long to witness the bright lights (especially the traffic lights) shine over Detroit again. … Leading the investment drive in Detroit is native son Dan Gilbert, who owns Quicken Loans and is worth $3.5 billion, according to Forbes. Gilbert has made it his mission in recent years to lead the city’s revitalization efforts. So far, he’s invested a staggering $1 billion, according to The New York Times, in downtown Detroit, purchasing and refurbishing real estate with the intentions of making it home to forward-thinking corporations and tech operations.”

— “City Benefits From Strength Of Orr’s Preparation.” Detroit Free Press columnist Stephen Henderson looks at the work done by the city’s state-appointed emergency manager, Kevyn Orr, and writes:

“I was hopeful that bankruptcy could be avoided for Detroit. But I’m not fearful that it will alter the plan to put residents and services first — and, for the first time ever, move creditors and employees down on the priority list. Orr’s presence here is costing us a fortune. And the people he’s hiring — the consultants, the bankers, the lawyers, including from his former firm, Jones Day — are costing us even more. But when we get to bankruptcy court, the work they put in on this deal will begin to really show its value — and Detroit’s future might really start to take shape.”

— “5 Reasons Not To Give Up On Detroit.” MarketWatch takes a detour from the serious financial issues to focus more on cultural matters. Detroit, it declares, is 1) a great sports town; 2) a great music town (from The Supremes to Kid Rock and more); 3) home to “glorious, if often desolate, art deco high-rises; 4) a great party town; and 5) the place for “the best Greek food this side of Heraklion.”

Article from  NPR

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