With each new idea, momentum builds in Detroit

June 18, 2015

Innovation is at the center of Detroit’s inclusive recovery. Yet this word “innovation” is used so often that its meaning tends to get a little obscured.
Rather than the narrow definition of technological advancement, the meaning of innovation we should use in Detroit is about doing things differently, redefining our future, and challenging ourselves to move beyond business as usual.

Innovation in this way is not an objective in itself – it’s not a new product, for example – rather it is a collection of new means and methods by which Detroiters can help to create substantial and sustainable change.

Innovation in Detroit can be seen operating at two levels. The first is through effective concepts, policies, and resources that will:

  • Increase employment and residential density through focused, equitable growth.
  • Stabilize neighborhoods by supporting residents and their ideas, and ensuring the amenities and city services we need to thrive.
  • Transform existing land and building vacancies into an integrated network capable of yielding new approaches to food, energy, recreation, and urban ecology that are unseen in other cities.

The second level of Detroit innovation is through specific projects and initiatives advanced by Detroiters to demonstrate how these approaches can, in their sum total, guide Detroit toward a future that maximizes the city’s strengths, most notably its people, while also delivering improvements in quality of life for everyone.

With each new idea, momentum builds in Detroit
Dan Kinkead. June 18, 2015. Michigan Radio