Map: The Shifting Cost of Coworking in Detroit 2014 to 2017

DETROITography

cowork_landscape_2017

Since 2014, I’ve been following the coworking trend in Detroit. I’ve used space for team work at An Office in Detroit that has seen a change in ownership, but is still going strong. In the last 3 year, there have been 8 coworking spaces that have closed and 13 new spaces opened, including the arrival of WeWork in two Downtown locations and the expansion of Bamboo Detroit into a second space. It is safe to say that the majority of the action is located Downtown within the 48226 zip code.

coworking-2017costchange

The most interesting coworking shift has been change in the monthly price of a drop-in desk or “hot desk.” Out of the 13 spaces that have been operating since 2014, 6 increased their prices, 2 dropped prices, and 5 kept prices the same (first map). In 2014 the average cost of a coworking desk was around $110, but in 2017…

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Map: Coney Detroit 2017

DETROITography

Coney-Detroit-2017-map

The coney dog was born in Detroit. The 2012 book titled Coney Detroit attributes the “coney dog” to Greek emigrants who likely passed through Ellis Island in New York (near the birthplace of the hot dog, Coney Island).

Coney dogs were cheap and quick allowing them to propagate outside of Detroit’s major factories. Workers had short lunches and limited budgets – the coney dog was the answer.

Today, there are multiple opportunities to eat at a Coney Island restaurant or diner. There are a few coney chains in the Southeast Michigan region and in the City of Detroit there are some coney clusters. Detroit’s Downtown is home to the Lafayette versus American rivalry, Northwest has Coney Islands right next to each other and includes Nicky D’s, while East of the State Fairgrounds sports a string of coneys mostly along Conant Street.

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Map: Where is the Heart of Detroit?

DETROITography

The “heart of Detroit” is a common marketing shtick attempting to show the importance and purported hip-ness of a given location. Sometimes that location is a new development and other times it is a historic place marker.

heart-of-detroit-headlines

Thanks to Aaron Foley’s 2012 Mlive article on this very topic and some more recent google searches, there is nice list of locations assumed to be the “heart of Detroit” and with wide geographic variation.

“My inner cartographer wants the “heart” of the city to be the Dexter/Davison/Linwood near Central High School, which is, uh, central to almost everywhere in the city.” – Aaron Foley

heart-detroit-locationsHeart of Detroit:

  • Midtown
  • Downtown
  • Capital Park
  • Barry Subdivision
  • Belle Isle
  • Central High School
  • W. Grand Blvd.
  • Linwood and Gladstone
  • Diack Park/Playground
  • New Center
  • Corktown
  • Brush Park
  • Woodbridge

Anyone can claim the “heart of Detroit,” but how can we determine the true “heart” or center? Mathematically we…

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Map: Detroit is Full of Old Housing

DETROITography

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Housing in Detroit is often discussed in terms of its absence or dilapidation. It’s no wonder that Detroit’s housing stock has suffered over the decades of job loss, disinvestment, and discrimination. When nearly 40% of residents live below the poverty line, investing in housing comes secondary to food, water, heat, etc. The vast majority of the city (93%) was built before 1978 when the Lead Rule banning lead in paint was adopted.

The city saw a housing boom during and after World War II when thousands of people migrated to Detroit for good paying jobs which at the time made up one-sixth of all employment in the country. Currently, 62% of residential housing was built before 1950 in Detroit.

Internationally, housing has been shown to be a critical component of good health. Whether it is providing a cement floor and tin roof to families in Haiti or ensuring routine maintenance…

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Map: Detroit Murals in the Market vs. Graffiti Tickets

DETROITography

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The city has ramped up ticketing for blight violators and that includes properties with graffiti. In some reported cases the graffiti tickets included sanctioned murals and street art, for example Eastern Market, Brooklyn Street Local (restaurant), and the Grand River Creative Corridor. Those tickets led the Mayor to apologize and dismiss all graffiti tickets for murals and signs.

As the artwork for Murals in the Market 2016 has started coming together. I started wondering how many of these graffiti offenses involved buildings in Eastern Market, where there is already a high number of sanctioned murals.

In some cases there have been buildings with both a new mural wall location and a graffiti ticket, but the majority of those have been dismissed graffiti tickets for sanctioned murals. There were 28 graffiti tickets in Eastern Market between 2015 – 2016 and 14 have been dismissed. The majority of businesses ticketed for…

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Map: Geography of Baseball Diamonds in the Detroit Region

DETROITography

terrapattern-baseball-detroit-regionTerrapattern recently launched to investigate typologies of similar places across cities via satellite imagery.

“…the Terrapattern prototype is intended to demonstrate a workflow by which users—such as journalists, citizen scientists, humanitarian agencies, social justice activists, archaeologists, urban planners, and other researchers—can easily search for visually consistent “patterns of interest”. We are particularly keen to help people identify, characterize and track indicators which have not been detected or measured previously, and which have sociological, humanitarian, scientific, or cultural significance.”

I decided to click on the baseball diamond at Tigers Stadium to see what places were similar in “Detroit” – Terrapattern’s sample area for Detroit includes a broader area beyond the city limits, but also cuts off the Far Westside.

terrapatttern-baseballThe result is this great geographic plot of similar images and a series of snapshots of other baseball diamonds. Terrapattern even gives you a nice GeoJSON file to play with if you…

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Map: Property Praxis – Speculation in Detroit

DETROITography

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Land in Detroit has been widely covered in the media as the city and it’s residents have grappled with widespread subprime mortgage lending, myriad tax foreclosures, and targeted blight removal.

The primary connection between these major crises and efforts in Detroit is property speculation.

At least 20% of land in Detroit is owned by property speculators, defined by the amount of property they own that is not registered to an owner that lives in the same neighborhood. Property speculators benefited from the new inventory of property created by the mortgage crisis, but in turn fueled the decline into blight of once intact neighborhoods.

This collaborative mapping project is not the first to examine individuals and corporations that have held large swaths of land in Detroit, but it is the first to examine the true extent of property speculation by digging into the records of shell companies and LLC that…

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Map: Children’s Traffic Fatalities in Detroit 2004 – 2014

DETROITography

child-traffic-fatalities-1

In rethinking the Detroit Geographic Expedition and Institute’s (DGEI) maps on “where black children get run over” and “citywide patterns of child traffic deaths and injuries” it became apparent to me that the pattern was partially due to the distribution of children in Detroit (map). For example Southwest has a higher density of children and also more traffic fatalities of children. However, there are some anomalies, such as the higher numbers on North-South streets in the Lower Eastside, on John R. North of Highland Park, and on Conner near the City Airport.

Detroit is known its high infant mortality rate, high rates of gun violence, and poor education system that all contribute to a harsh environment for children. How do we better protect the children in our neighborhoods from cars?

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Map: Detroit’s Digital Divide

DETROITography

detroitbroadband-improve

I’ve often shared information here that notes 40% of Detroit households have no access to internet, both broadband and cell phone access. In a city that faces countless issues with connectivity and communicating with pockets of people spread across a large area, there is great potential for internet to bring Detroit together, improve communications, and equalize access – jobs, education, resources, etc.

The latest numbers from the 2014 American Community Survey show Detroit has 95,825 households or 37% of all Detroit households have no internet access. The city sadly ranks #2 nationally for cities with over 50,000 households. The logical next step in saying that 37% of Detroit households have no internet is to then ask where are those households located? Who is impacted?

From the above map you can see the obvious outline of Detroit with low broadband internet access. Downtown, Boston-Edison, Grandmont-Rosedale, Palmer Woods, and a handful…

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