Today's Coming Crisis Movie

Friday, July 29, 2011

Detroit to set services by neighborhood condition -- which will pit neighbourhood against neighbourhood for survival

Detroit neighborhoods with more people and a better chance of survival will receive different levels of city services than more blighted areas under a plan unveiled Wednesday that some residents fear may pit them against each other for scarce resources.

Mayor Dave Bing released details from his Detroit Works Project, calling the changes a "short-term intervention" necessary because the city, with limited financial resources, a $155 million budget deficit and a dwindling population, was spread dangerously thin.

"Our focus is going to be on the people in the neighborhoods," Bing said. "We can effect real change and improve neighborhoods."

Bing's plan isn't about shrinking Detroit —the boundaries of the 139-square-mile city aren't receding. The plan also backs away from forcing the redistribution of what's left of the population into areas where people still live and where the houses aren't on the verge of caving in. Many residents had strongly opposed that idea.

"We will not force anybody to move," Bing said. "We want people to move into the areas that are going to grow; where we have the amenities, the density." (more)