Civic Engagement

photo from Blight BootcampThe foundation of all of the planning elements and the single most important factor in determining successful implementation of the Strategic Framework is Civic Engagement. Detroit Future City is committed to participatory implementation, in which the organization and its partners engage in multiple layers simultaneously from individuals and neighborhoods, to sector-based activity to systemic reforms. It takes the entire community, in Detroit and those who are interested in Detroit, to engage and implement the Strategic Framework, to help take Detroit forward.


Denby High School

The engagement of Detroit’s youth is critical for sustainable, long-term implementation of the DFC Strategic Framework. As a major step toward youth engagement, DFC partnered with Denby High School to integrate the DFC Strategic Framework into their curriculum in two significant manners. The 2014 senior class of Denby High School completed senior capstone projects inspired by the DFC Strategic Framework by focusing on reimagining the underutilized Skinner Park near their school. The Denby High School students’ senior capstone also incorporated the DFC Strategic Framework into the education curriculum across the following subjects: math, science, English and social studies. This initiative provides a platform to involve youth in civic engagement while instilling DFC’s priorities into future generations.

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DFC Blight Bootcamp

In June, nearly 300 people attended the DFC Blight Bootcamp held at Wayne County Community College District Downtown campus. Blight Bootcamp is a component of the DFC 2014 ‘Spring into Action’ campaign which seeks to create linkages around blight removal activities taking place across the city. The DFC Blight Bootcamp featured 12 workshops with 44 total speakers, outlining various blight elimination efforts and resources, including a copy the recently-released Blight Removal Task Force Report.

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Click here to watch presentations from Blight Bootcamp.

A special thanks to Blight Bootcamp partner Michigan Community Resources

DFC District Meetings

In April and May, DFC, along with civic partners, held a community meeting in each of the seven Detroit City Council districts. Each meeting included a district-specific presentation of our implementation efforts, remarks from organizations in that district, and included community questions, feedback and resource sharing. More than 500 people attended the meetings and 120 survey cards were collected. DFC will utilize the community feedback to drive priorities and identify possible projects across the seven city council districts.

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A special thanks to district meetings partner Michigan Community Resources

For a full report on civic engagement from district meetings and Blight Bootcamp, click here.

DFC Hosts Packard Plant Design Competition

DFC hosted the Packard Plant “Reanimate the Ruins” International Design Competition Exhibition on Friday, August 8. The competition was created and led by Parallel Projections and brought together over 200 submissions from 30 countries (including schemes from the Detroit area) to describe a new vision for the storied plant’s future. DFC hosted a review of the submissions and a public exhibition.

Dan Kinkead, DFC Director of Projects, who brought the event to DFC and contributed to the review process, said “the range of submissions reviewed and displayed paint a broad picture of potential futures for the Packard. These competitions are not intended to describe bona fide redevelopment schemes, but instead they assert strong design concepts to stimulate thought and discussion, and to prompt new ways of thinking.”

The Packard Plant was acquired by investor Fernando Palazuelo earlier this year through the Wayne County Treasurer’s Office Auction, and Kari Smith, his Project Manager for the Packard’s redevelopment, was present to review the submissions. In this case, the competition also works to fulfill important objectives of the DFC Strategic Framework.

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