Laura Trudeau, senior program director at The Kresge Foundation, discusses the need to integrate revitalization efforts across disciplines and involve all parts of the community—individuals, government, business, nonprofits, and philanthropy—in collective action to bring Detroit and other similar American cities back to a position of health and prosperity.
Even as Detroit struggles through a period of emergency financial management by the State of Michigan, people who care deeply about the city are taking such actions—working to reposition it to grow again, to offer more and better opportunities for residents, and to regain a prominent position among American cities in the 21st century. With commitment and resourcefulness, Detroiters have begun to build several interrelated components of a healthier and more vital community:
- Effective mass transit;
- A stronger core city as the economic driver for the region;
- A more innovative and student-centered system of schools;
- Greener, healthier, more active neighborhoods including alternative, productive uses for vacant and underutilized land; and
- Emphasis on arts and creativity in attaching people to place.