Posts Tagged ‘green’

GREEN plan for Detroit’s East Riverfront

Sunday, July 1st, 2012

After about 18 months of planning and community engagement, the GREEN plan was revealed, a plan for greenways throughout the Detroit’s lower eastside.

The GREEN Task Force, a coalition of Detroit-based non-profit groups, presents to you a vision and a realistic plan for creating a network of greenways on Detroit’s greater riverfront east. Just as greenways serve many functions – from recreational venues to economic linkages between neighborhoods – this report also aims at many goals. This plan serves as a catalyst for:

    • Economic development
    • A tool for bringing communities together
    • A way of defining a new future for Detroit’s greater riverfront east

Modeshift covered this story a couple weeks ago.

“It’s evident things like greenways and bike lanes are good for community development,” [Villages CDC executive director Brian] Hurttienne says. “Otherwise we wouldn’t spend the money we do.”

“Greenways provide much more than ways to get somewhere without a car,” says Maggie DeSantis, chair of the GREEN Task Force and board member of the Detroit Eastside Community Collaborative. “Greenways improve health and safety by creating recreational venues, beautifying neighborhoods, creating nodes of economic development, and by connecting neighborhoods and residents to each other, and to the broader city.”

Since the unveiling, the GREEN task force has been presenting this plan to many different groups and exploring funding options.

And some of the routes are closer to implementation than others.

  • The city has initial plans to add bike lanes to this segment of Kercheval next year.
  • The East Jefferson Corridor Collaborative continues their efforts for bike lanes on E. Jefferson. They are focusing on the roadway between Belle Isle’s bridge and Indian Village. They have a few different design options, two of which are physically-separated bike lanes, also known as cycletracks. They are currently doing a traffic study to ensure the required road diet would not be a roadblock.

The project furthest from implementation is likely the Detroit RiverWalk extension to Alter Road. The Detroit Riverfront Conservancy is focusing on completing the eastern portion of the existing RiverWalk before shifting resources to the western portion between Joe Louis Arena and Riverside Park/Ambassador Bridge.

TechTown: Plugging into the Green movement

Monday, May 30th, 2011

Dodge Brother's bicycle ball bearing patent of 1896

At 4pm on June 3rd, I will be presenting at TechTown’s First Friday networking event on the connection between entrepreneurs, greenways, and bicycling. The event will be held at NextEnergy, 461 Burroughs in Detroit.

As currently planned, the presentation will begin by recognizing Detroit’s early bicycle entrepreneurs such as William Metzger, Henry Ford, Horatio Earle, and the Dodge Brothers .Though not from Detroit, the Wright Brothers will get mentioned as well.

Horatio Earle, the cyclist who founded MDOT, wrote this in his autobiography:

The bicycle is to be given credit, not only as the pioneer of the good roads movement but also as the parent of the automobile; for whoever heard of ball bearings and pneumatic tires until they were used in bicycles? Where did the expert mechanics come from, if not the bicycle industry? So, this is the rightful order of the origin of modern means of transportation: first, the young American; second, bicycles; third, good roads; fourth, automobiles; fifth, airplanes.

While early bicycle entrepreneurs were integral to Detroit becoming the Motor City, there are many examples today of entrepreneurs lessening Detroit’s car dependence and making it more green — the primary focus of this presentation.

There is a $5 fee payable at the door.