Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al. Detroit? - Honda Motorcycles - FireBlades.org
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post #1 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 2:24 PM Thread Starter
 
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Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al. Detroit?

What's up with Detroit? Since my beloved Steelers are heading there next weekend (no, this isn't a sports thread), I have done some reading on the city and all I can come up with is, well, negative news.

http://www.joestump.net/967769188/i-...oit-sucks.html

Is this place as big a hole as some folks would make it out to be? Out of control crime? Dwindling population? Widespread decaying housing? People exhuming deceased loved ones and moving them to cemeteries outside the city?

Anyone who has lived or visited there care to comment?

(Note: I'm not flaming Detroit. I don't know jack about the place, hence the reason for my post.)
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post #2 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 2:45 PM
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

That pretty well sums it up. The city has been scrambling to put a nice facade* on everything in hopes of improving it's image for the Super Bowl...but you can't undo 40 years of decline overnight. To its credit though, Detroit has made some recent improvements. Unfortunately it hasn't addressed the key issues of poverty and a declining population in an aging, urban city.

*e.g. like foam paneling glued to the exteriors of crumbling, abandoned buildings..

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post #3 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 3:09 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

Interestingly, Detroit seems a lot like downtown L.A. was about 30 years ago. Tons of "GOING OUT OF BUSINESS!!!" signs on storefronts, trash blowing around on the streets, cars being towed away . . . But there are several areas that are actually a lot of fun. The strip of Woodward by the Fox Theatre and Comerica/Ford is pretty upscale with the HockeyTown Cafe being a nice place to hang. There are a few great old resturants that have weathered the storms throughout the years and quite a bit of "new" music goes on downtown at places like Saint Andrews Hall and the State Theatre.

I don't quite understand why they moved the Tigers to Comerica Park, as Tiger Stadium still stands exactly like it did when they left. Joe Louis Arena is magic when the Wings are there and actually a pretty nice place. Ford Auditiorium is dark (and has been for several years) even though it is one of the newer symphony halls in the midwest (the DSO now plays at the Detroit Opera House, as Ford's acoustics are a nightmare).

Check out www.detroitredwings.com as there are several links to stuff that isn't all negative about the city. One of our ex-employees works at the Fox Theatre and whenever we hook up, he always shows me another great place downtown that I never knew existed.

One of my larger client's moved out of the First National building (center of Downtown Detroit) several years ago and saved over .5 million bucks a year in city taxes, so I have to think that is one of the reasons several businesses have moved to the suburbs and there are so many vacant buildings.

There are places in Detroit I wouldn't want to be stuck in at night (and some I wouldn't drive through during the day), but just about every good sized city I have ever visited has places just like these, so it's certainly not unique to Detroit. The only time I was ever assaulted was in Paris (France) and I chased (and caught!) a guy for 2 blocks on foot in Washington DC a few years ago after he ran into our truck and jumped and ran (turned out he had kidnapped the lady and kid in the car he was driving and was running from the FBI and Baltimore police in a 70 mile long high speed chase). So I guess Detroit isn't necessarily as uniquely bad as several people think . . .
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post #4 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 3:17 PM
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

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Originally Posted by abtech
So I guess Detroit isn't necessarily as uniquely bad as several people think . . .
Relatively speaking...

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post #5 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 3:20 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

While driving to LAX, I pass the exits for Hawthorne and Crenshaw, and note they built a HUGE wall to separate the highway from the area.

I informed my GF she was to stay the hell out of that area and make sure to come to the airport full of gas.

All big cities have their scary districts, even SF has places that are kinda seedy at night.



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post #6 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 3:37 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

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Originally Posted by luvtolean
All big cities have their scary districts, even SF has places that are kinda seedy at night.
Hell yeah, been there, on foot, lost, at night, scared and didn't know which way was which...
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post #7 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 3:40 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

I moved from LA to southeast Michigan 32 years ago, and the only part of LA that remotely resembled Detroit was the Watts area off the Harbor freeway near USC.

The difference was that LA rebuilt a lot of the areas destroyed by the mid-'60's riots amd Detroit seemed to have abandoned them. Even South Chicago is changing a bit..

The city has lost more than half of its population since the late '60's. It has gone from 2,000,000 to under a million. I don't know of any city that has undergone such a transformation. Maybe the area around three mile island?

The people that left took the money with them. It's bleak, no two ways about it.

The improvements that Abtech and Red Rider have noted are significant, but that place is thoroughly screwed.

By the way, LTL, the walls on the 405 at Crenshaw and Hawthorne are for noise control. Those off the Harbor at Florence through Vernon are not.
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post #8 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 3:49 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

After doing touring sound for 10 years, I guess I have seen the underbelly of just about every city big enough to have a concert venue, so maybe I'm a bit less amazed at what goes on downtown in most big cities.

The first time I went to New York, I watched in amazement while a woman stopped in the middle of the crosswalk and took a leak. The next day, the cab I was in hit a city bus at around 35 mph and the cabbie just flipped the bus driver off and kept going.

Late one night in London, I was walking the town (one of my favorite pastimes to combat jet lag and get a look at the city I'm in) I saw 5 mid thirties men in what looked to be New York Yankees baseball uniforms beat the living crap out of some homeless people with baseball bats. I also saw some guy wearing nothing but fishnet stockings and a garter belt standing in the entrance of a shop in Chelsea (eyes straight ahead, keep walking . . .).

Every city has it's "area", Detroit's is just pretty big . . .
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post #9 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 3:50 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

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Originally Posted by abtech
...and I chased (and caught!) a guy for 2 blocks on foot in Washington DC a few years ago after he ran into our truck and jumped and ran (turned out he had kidnapped the lady and kid in the car he was driving and was running from the FBI and Baltimore police in a 70 mile long high speed chase). . . .

So Batman, what'd you do with the guy once you caught him?

And then there's this asshole...
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post #10 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 4:12 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

Quote:
Originally Posted by phobiaphobe

So Batman, what'd you do with the guy once you caught him?
I tackled him and he landed face down on the sidewalk (along with 3 people trying to avoid the chase). I turned him over and pinned him to the concrete with my knees on his arms. Good thing, because I was pulled off the guy by 2 guys in suits carrying stockless automatic weapons who rolled the guy back to face down and pulled a 380 automatic out of his hand and a Colt Python out of his pants under his coat. I was running on empty and was just trying to catch my breath and figure out what was going on when the 2 guys who were with me in the truck caught up and starting telling me about the carnage that had happened before he ran into us.

I was extremely pissed because it was our first day off in 2 weeks of doing sound for a tour and I was looking forward to a relaxing day catching some sleep, but ended up spending 4 hours in an interrogation room before I could even check out the damage to the truck (which had to be towed into Baltimore for repairs).


An interesting story, but a pain in the ass . . .

Last edited by abtech; 01-29-2006 at 6:30 PM.
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post #11 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 7:15 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

Detriot does have a few nice things but it's biggest problem was years of Mayor Coleman Young. He was as corrupt as they come and kept his office by playing black against white and giving city jobs out stategically (to spread the green among families). During is reign the police chief was indicted for stealing the drug buy money and the FBI caught officers and the mayors relative acting as security on a drug bust (no that was not isolated).

When they finally elected Mayor Archer the corruption improved and he started to court the suburbs (where the money is) but he has moved on.

The new mayor is a nightmare and thus will likely stay for 30 years and drag Detriot down further. There is safe enclaves where you can live behind a fence or visit and be safe but I would never consider living there.

Of course this coming from an ex-troll that has zero desire to go back

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post #12 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 8:47 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

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Originally Posted by abtech
I chased (and caught!) a guy for 2 blocks on foot in Washington DC a few years ago after he ran into our truck and jumped and ran (turned out he had kidnapped the lady and kid in the car he was driving and was running from the FBI and Baltimore police in a 70 mile long high speed chase).
Cool anecdote!

Interesting stuff regardind the Motor City, fellas, thanks for the insight.
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post #13 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 8:55 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

Going through Detroit was the only time I ever seen my ex lock the doors in the car. Not one section, the whole interstate ride through. She said something like this, "I don't care what happens with the car, don't stop until we are on fire".
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post #14 of 47 Old 01-29-2006, 11:45 PM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

First time I was there, I heard a commercial on the radio advertising a party downtown, and she said "Don't be afraid to come south of 8 mile (the city limits)".


My Rules:

1. Stay in a hotel north of 14 mile. There is an east-west "Mile" road just about every mile heading north out of the city.

2. Learn how to make a left turn in the Metro area.

3. Don't look for any hills. Flat as Kansas

4. Don't go looking for a sportbike after September. Not much more than 4-wheelers and snowmobiles on the showroom floor in most plases except Roseneau Motorsports in Dearborn and the Aprilia dealer in Utica.

5. Did I mention, if it's not summer,DAMN it's cold!
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post #15 of 47 Old 01-30-2006, 11:07 AM
 
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Re: Calling abtech or Red Rider, et al

Quote:
Originally Posted by sheepofblue
Detriot does have a few nice things but it's biggest problem was years of Mayor Coleman Young. He was as corrupt as they come and kept his office by playing black against white and giving city jobs out stategically (to spread the green among families). During is reign the police chief was indicted for stealing the drug buy money and the FBI caught officers and the mayors relative acting as security on a drug bust (no that was not isolated).
I left Cleveland just as they were starting to improve things. And Sheep's comments pretty much summed up Cleveland and the bad things going on there through the mid-80's. Detroit is pulling itself back up, but it will take some time. As Abtech noted, there are some good places, you just need to know where they are and how to get there.

As for Red Rider's pessimism and cynicism, well, that gives an idea of why Detroit might have a worse reputation than other cities that also have their problems. People in the Detroit area seem to like to talk down the city, and with the auto companies crashing, it is getting worse.

Once people start discovering the good things, then the reputation will come back, which will feed further development. It just takes time.

Don't be afraid to come, just be aware of your surroundings.
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