Something we have covered a lot in some of the film’s we’ve been working lately on is Detroit’s long term plan for residents and communities– something that has become a hot topic of discussion via the Mayor’s Long Term Planning initiative as part of the Detroit Works Project. To broaden the perspective on what Detroiters are voicing as primary concern vis-a-vis Americans in general, we can look at a recent article in the Atlantic discussing urban planning and what Americans think makes communities work. Some of the studies findings:

According to a new poll from the American Planning Association, two-thirds of the 1,300 Americans surveyed said that their community needs both planning and market forces to improve its economic situation.

And more specifically:

Respondents were also asked to rank the top five factors that make up an “ideal community.” The results:

1. Locally owned businesses nearby
2. Being able to stay in the same neighborhood while aging
3. Availability of sidewalks
4. Energy-efficient homes
5. Availability of transit

A nifty graphic to aid in looking at more of the findings:

The whole point: Detroiters have voiced many of the same concerns locally throughout the Detroit Works Project Community Engagement sessions. So, a few things come to mind:

  1. How can Detroit lead the charge for establishing aggressive appraoches to meeting these needs for Detroiters and establishing models that do it for other cities across the country?
  2. How can we assure that these topics remain at the top of the priority list as the Detroit Works Project moves forward with its long term planning initiatives?