The article provides a brief overview of some of the many neighborhoods and historic districts in Detroit, Michigan
Arden Park-East Boston Historic District
The Arden Park-East Boston Historic District is a mostly residential area in central Detroit. Many of the neighborhood's 92 large homes and mansions feature richly planted trees and flowers, deep setbacks, and oversized lots.
Atkinson Avenue Historic District
The Atkinson Avenue Historic District is located along Atkinson Avenue, just south of Boston-Edison
, between the Lodge Freeway and Linwood Avenue. It contains approximately 225 homes, primarily built from 1915-1925.
The Bagley community is an area in Northwest Detroit whose boundaries are West Eight Mile Road to the north, Livernois Avenue to the east, West McNichols (Six Mile Road) to the south, and Wyoming Avenue to the west. The community's name is likely derived from Bagley Elementary School, which is the lone public school within the community. This community is situated just west of the Palmer Woods/Sherwood Forest/University District areas of Detroit.
Black Bottom/Paradise Valley
Black Bottom and Paradise Valley were African-American neighborhoods on Detroit's near eastside, roughly following the I-75/I-375 corridor from the river to the Grand Trunk rail line. For most of Detroit's history this was the only location where blacks could find housing and as a result it was substandard and extremely overcrowded. The epicenter of Black Bottom was Hastings street where black businesses including jazz, blues, and night clubs thrived during the first half of the twentieth century. The father of Motown Records founder Berry Gordy owned a grocery store at the corner of St. Antoine and Farnsworth streets not far from this center.
The entire slum was demolished in the 1960s as part of an extensive urban renewal program in the city of Detroit where tens of thousands of residents were relocated in one of the first applications of eminent domain policy in the United States. In place of the old neighborhood is now the Detroit Medical Center, Lafayette Park and the Mies Van der Rohe apartments, and the now mostly abandoned Brewster-Douglas housing projects among other smaller housing and commercial areas.
Boston-Edison Historic District
Boston-Edison Historic District is located along Boston Boulevard, Chicago Boulevard, Longfellow, and Edison between Woodward Avenue and Linwood. Its 900 homes, built primarily from 1905-1925, makes it the largest residential historic district in the nation.
Bricktown Historic District
Bricktown separates the Renaissance Center from Greektown. It is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The area contains an eclectic mix of late 19th century architecture and early 20th century industrial buildings and warehouses. Bricktown is home to St. Peter and Paul’s Catholic Church, the oldest standing church in Detroit, and the Italian Renaissance style Wayne County Building (which was saved from demolition in the early 1980’s). The Wayne County Courthouse, which used to be located in the Wayne County Building, was the place where Mae West was once a defendant on a charge of public indecency. The Bricktown area is now seeing resurgence with the creation of lofts and the addition of the Greektown casino. While it is small in area, Bricktown is notable for its live music venues. Jacoby's provides a small performance space for up & coming acts. Around the corner, St. Andrew's Hall is a venue for nationally touring acts, as is the Shelter in the basement of St. Andrew's.
Brightmoor stretches from Puritan and Schoolcraft Roads (north/south) between Telegraph Road and Evergreen (east/west). Brightmoor was created in the early 1900s by Henry Ford as a neighborhood for his factory workers. The area has been affected economically by the overall reduction in automotive industry jobs in the region. Consequently, the poverty rate is 44% in the neighborhood, compared to a 32% average for the rest of Detroit.
This neighborhood is depicted in the novel Warpath by Jeffry Scott Hansen.
Brush Park is the 24 block area bounded by Mack on the north, Woodward on the west, Beaubien on the east, and the Fisher freeway on the south. This neighborhood is within the larger area known as Midtown.
The Cass Corridor is bounded by Woodward Avenue to the East, West Grand Boulevard to the North, the John C. Lodge Freeway to the West, and the Fisher Freeway serves as its southern terminus in Downtown Detroit. Originally home to industry and some of Detroit's wealthiest residents, this old neighborhood declined rapidly as industry left in the mid-twentieth century. The area became home to mostly African American and Appalachian white residents by the 1960's and quickly developed as the hub of urban arts and culture in Detroit. The Cass Corridor also quickly became a hub of the Midwest drug trade. Young Boys Inc. among other gangs terrorized the area well into the 1980's, controlling the largest heroin and crack markets in the United States and even taking over the nearby Jeffries Projects.
The area north of Warren Avenue sufferred massive demolition in the 1960's to make room for an expanding Wayne State University, and gentrification has continuously pushed outward to encompass nearly all of the Cass Corridor except the section south of Martin Luther King Avenue which remains severely economically depressed. New area residents have changed the name of the neighborhood to "Midtown" to disassociate the area from its reputation as one of the poorest and most dangerous places in the country. Detroit natives, however, continue to refer to the area as the Cass Corridor and many lament the loss of low-income housing and the rich culture that once thrived there.
Chaldean Town runs along 7 Mile road from Woodward Avenue east to John R. road. The area was designated in 1999 as an economic district featuring Chaldean
owned businesses, but it has a longer history of residential settlement by Chaldean immigrants dating back to the 1960s. Chaldean Town is often seen as a "staging area" for new immigrants to settle before moving on to other ethnic enclaves in the northern suburbs of Detroit, though many retain the ownership of businesses in the area after moving to the suburbs.
Conant Gardens is located on the East Side of Detroit along east 7 Mile Road
. The neighborhood is unusual in that it was originally built and owned by African Americans
, starting in the 1910s. The original owner of the property, Schubael Conant, was an abolitionist
. In the 1840s, he removed the racially restrictive covenants which prevented land from being sold to African Americans. Similar covenants prevented African Americans from buying land in much of the rest of the city until the late 1940s. Nonetheless, the neighborhood was originally intended as an area for white collar employees of the Ford Motor Company
to settle. This plan was never put into action, and a large influx of African Americans after World War I
helped make the neighborhood primarily black.
American rap group Slum Village was raised in the Conant Gardens.
Corktown Historic District
Originally of Irish origins, Corktown is the oldest surviving neighborhood in Detroit. The Corktown Historic District is located directly south of Michigan Avenue
, and directly west of the Lodge Freeway. The buildings of the Corktown Historic District are largely private residences, although some Michigan Avenue commercial buildings are open to the public.
Cultural Center Historic District
Detroit's Cultural Center is located in the Midtown neighborhood, about two miles (3 km) north of downtown, centered on the Cultural Center Historic District
, which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places
. The Cultural Center is roughly bounded by Cass Avenue
to the west, Interstate 75
to the east, Interstate 94
to the north and Warren Avenue to the south. It also includes the East Ferry Avenue Historic District
. Attractions include the Detroit Institute of Arts
, the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History
, the Scarab Club
, the Detroit Historical Museum
, the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit
, the main library of the Detroit Public Library
system and the Detroit Science Center
. The College for Creative Studies
is located adjacent the Scarab Club and opposite the East face of the Detroit Institute of Arts. The main campus of Wayne State University
is located adjacent to the area, on the opposite side of Woodward.
Delray is a residential area in the industrial southwest side of the city. It is isolated from other residential communities by industrial warehouses and other commercial properties. Delray is bordered by the cities of Dearborn, Melvindale, and River Rouge to its south, Fort Street to it west, and Clark Street and the Detroit River to its east.
Due to the long-time presence of large industrial complexes including the nearby Ford River Rouge Plant (once the largest industrial facility in the world), the area is considered to be one of the most polluted residential areas in Detroit. In 2006 controversy began over Systematic Recycling LLC, a composting facility which began operations in Delray that year. The facility does not accept compost from the city, but from the surrounding suburbs. It has also been accused of accepting inciting protest from those forced endure the stinging smell in the neighborhood. Systematic Recycling LLC is currently undergoing an expansion to accept more than four times the amount of waste that it accepted in 2006.
Also plaguing the neighborhood is the Detroit Wastewater Treatment Facility, spanning several football fields and adding to the nightmarish gases and fumes which blow over the few residences left in Delray. Just south of the church is Zug Island with its black steel factories and fumestacks illegally releasing eerie blue, green, and orange flames for days at a time.
Downtown Detroit is the city's central business district, bordered by the Lodge Freeway
to the west, the Fisher Freeway
to the north, Interstate 375
to the east, and the Detroit River
to the south. The area contains most of the prominent skyscrapers in Detroit, including the Renaissance Center
, the Penobscot Building
, and the Guardian Building
. Downtown has a number of parks including those linked by a promenade along the Detroit International Riverfront
According to a collaborative report released by the Brookings Institution, Social Compact and the University of Michigan on October 26, 2006, downtown Detroit is home to 6,500 residents, and hosts 80,500 downtown workers, which makes up 21% of Detroit city's total employment. Downtown offers a number of residential high rises, including Riverfront Towers.
In recent years the downtown area has seen a tremendous growth and development. Since 2000 a number of major construction projects have been completed including the new Compuware Headquarters at Campus Martius Park and two new stadiums: Comerica Park and Ford Field. General Motors moved their headquarters into the Renaissance Center, and the Detroit Lions have relocated from Pontiac, MI to downtown Detroit. High-profile events like the 2005 MLB All-Star Game, Super Bowl XL, and the 2006 World Series have taken place in downtown, generating income for local businesses and spurring more growth. As result new residents are moving into Detroit in the assortment of new lofts that are opening up, while condemned buildings and homes are being razed to make land available for yet more development. An example of these trends is the Westin Book-Cadillac Hotel. In 2006, the Cleveland-based Ferchill Group began the $180 million redevelopment of the long vacant Book Cadlliac Hotel at the corner of Washington Blvd. and Michigan Ave. Upon completion, the project which has been hailed by historic preservationists will house a 455 room Westin Hotel, 67 high-end condominiums, and two to three restaurants, and some miscellaneous retail serving hotel and conference center guests. DTE headquarters will feature an urban oasis of parks, walkways, and a reflecting pool.
East English Village
The tree-lined streets of East English Village feature a variety of homes ranging from small bungalows
to large, luxurious older homes. The housing stock also includes a large number of two-family homes. Although the neighborhood resembles the Grosse Pointe suburbs bordering it on the South, the neighborhood is racially mixed with smaller lots.
East Ferry Avenue Historic District
The East Ferry Avenue Historic District is an nationally-recognized historic residential district stretching from Woodward Avenue
east to Brush; the locally-designated historic district includes a third block between Brush and Beaubien. The district includes the Col. Frank J. Hecker House
and the Charles Lang Freer House
Eastern Market Historic District
Eastern Market is a historic commercial district, listed in the National Register of Historic Places. It is located approximately one mile (1.6 km) northeast of the city's downtown and is bordered on the south by Gratiot Avenue, the north by Mack Avenue, the east by St. Aubin St. and the west by the Chrysler Expressway (I-75).
Grand Circus Park Historic District
is a name used in Detroit for the Grand Circus Park Historic District
, with Kales Building
, Grand Park Centre
, The Fillmore Detroit
, Comerica Park
, and Ford Field
located in it. It is named after the Fox Theatre
, a National Historic Landmark. Interstate 75
, Grand River Avenue
, Woodward Avenue
, Interstate 375
, Michigan Avenue
, and Gratiot Avenue
all pass through or close to Foxtown
. The Detroit People Mover
has a station in Foxtown
on the south end of Grand Circus Park.
Greektown Historic District
Greektown is located less than half a mile (800 m) from the Renaissance Center in the downtown area. It comprises only a few city blocks, with Monroe Street at the center. The neighborhood is a popular restaurant and entertainment district, having many restaurants that serve authentic Greek cuisine, as well as one of the city's three casinos, Greektown Casino. Certain buildings on Monroe Street are themed to resemble the Parthenon, Pegasus, and other forms of Greek architecture. Greek music is also played on Monroe Street throughout the day. Well known restaurants include The Laikon Cafe, Cyprus Taverna, Pegasus Taverna, and Pizza Papalis. The Detroit People Mover has a station at the Greektown Casino on Beaubien Street between Monroe Street and Lafayette Boulevard. The Greektown Historic District is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Indian Village Historic District
Indian Village is an historic neighborhood comprising Burns, Iroqouis, and Seminole Streets, stretching from Mack Avenue to East Jefferson Avenue on Detroit' east side. Homes in the neighborhood were built primarily in the early 20th century; many are architecturally significant.
Islandview is located on Detroit's near east side immediately west of West Village. It is bound by Jefferson to the south, Mack to the north, Baldwin to the east, and Mt. Elliott to the west. The eastern boundary of the neighborhood, Balwin Street, was the Detroit city limit until 1891. The eastern portion features many large turn-of-the-century single and multi-family homes, apartment buildings and brick row houses. The western portion is largely a rundown industrial area, but is home to several notable non profits including the Capuchin
Soup Kitchen, the Earthworks Urban Farming Project, and Gleaners Food Bank. Large portions of the neighborhood, (especially the southeastern portion close to West Village) are undergoing a rebirth with several new housing developments by community-based Messiah Housing Corp. and Islandview Development Corp.. English Village, A luxury condominium townhouse and loft development is being constructed along Townsend, Sheridan and Field streets just south of Kercheval. Islandview is named for it's close proximity to Detroit's island park, Belle Isle.
Krainz Woods stretches from 7 Mile Road and Ryan Road to 7 Mile and Mound Road. The Sojourner Truth Homes housing project
is located there. The neighborhood was named after Captain John Krainz, a World War II
hero from Detroit.
Many Motown-ers singing groups such as The Dramatics & The Floaters, we're from the Sojourner Truth housing projects.
Lafayette Park Historic District
Lafayette Park is part of the Mies van der Rohe
Residential District listed in the National Register of Historic Places
Mexicantown is located in Southwest Detroit, near Porter and Bagley. With a 6.9 percent population rise to 96,000 from 1990
, the city's revitalized Mexicantown has improved the local economy. About half the residents are Hispanic
, 25% are African-American, 20% are White and 5% are Arab-American, according to the Southwest Detroit Business Association. It is located one block north of the Ambassador Bridge
. It is known for Mexican cuisine
at restaurants such as Mexican Village, Evie's Tamales, El Zocalo and Xochimilco. Restaurants, bakeries, and shops are located on Vernor Highway, on both the east and west sides of the Interstate 75
Mexicantown has had a thriving economy in recent years, as evidenced by new housing, increased business openings and the recently opened Mexicantown International Welcome Center.
Midtown Detroit is an area roughly two square miles between Downtown Detroit to the south and New Center to the north. Its boundaries are the Ford, Chrysler, Fisher, and Lodge Freeways. It includes the Art Center and the Medical Center in the northeast quadrant, Wayne State University's campus, the Detroit Public Library, and the Detroit Historical Museum in the northwest, and the Cultural Center including various restaurants, galleries, and nightlife venues along Woodward in the center, among other things.
This area includes Brush Park, Brewster-Douglass housing projects, and the Cass Corridor.
The New Center is a commercial district located approximately three miles (5 km) north of the city's downtown, and one mile (1.6 km) north of the Cultural Center, around the intersection of Woodward Avenue and Grand Boulevard (which is sometimes referred to as The Boulevard). Developed in the 1920s, it was designed to create a business hub that would offer convenient access to both downtown resources and outlying factories. Some historians believe that the New Center may be the original edge city - a sub-center remote from but related to an urban core. From 1923 to 1996, General Motors maintained its world headquarters in the New Center (in what is now Cadillac Place) before relocating downtown to the Renaissance Center. Cadillac Place, a National Historic Landmark is now occupied by State of Michigan government offices. The Detroit St. Regis Hotel is across from Cadillac Place. The descriptor "New Center" derived its name from the New Center News, an automotive-focused free newspaper begun in 1933 that continues to operate under the name Detroit Auto Scene. The CityFest, a five-day street festival held around Independence Day, takes place on the streets of New Center. The Fisher Building, a National Historic Landmark, is considered an Art Deco masterpiece, sits in the New Center.
North Corktown was originally a section of the Corktown neighborhood; when I-75 was constructed, it severed North Corktown from the rest of Corktown. The present neighborhood is roughly bounded by I-75, I-96, the Lodge Freeway, and Martin Luther King.
Detroit's North End neighborhood is bound by Woodward Avenue to the west, the city of Highland Park
to the north, the Chrysler Freeway
to the east, and East Grand Boulevard to the south. Historically, before the construction of the Chrysler Freeway
, the eastern boundary of the neighborhood was Oakland Street. The North End was one of the few places middle class African-Americans could live in early twentieth century Detroit. The neighborhood flourished until the 1950s, when the construction of I-75
and suburban flight led it to decline. The neighborhood is now badly blighted. Despite the construction of I-75 and the effects of urban decay, the North End still has a stock of early 20th century housing, including several dozen rowhouses and apartment buildings. The North End is also starting to see new housing being built for the first time in several decades, and was chosen as one of the focus neighborhoods for Mayor Kilpatrick's NEXT Detroit Neighborhood Initiatives, with specific goals to beautify the neighborhood and strengthen civic leadership. Some in the city have accused the administration of using the NEXT Detroit Neighborhood Initiative to give tax breaks to speculators. One developer has already abandoned half-built vacant houses left scatterred across the North End and Highland Park, driving down already low property values and blighting the area even further.
Many musicians, such as Smokey Robinson and The Miracles, are from the North End Area.
A neighborhood that stretches from Five Points east to Greenfield Road and from 8 Mile Road
to Schoolcraft Road, Old Redford encompasses approximately 8 to 10 square miles (21 to 26 km²) of land. It was originally part of Redford Township outside of the city limits, but was annexed in 1926. Much of the housing stock near the center of the area is a mixture of early 1900s to 1940s homes. The area was serviced by a streetcar until General Motors shut down the Detroit street railway system in the 1950s. The main commercial intersection is at Grand River Avenue
and Lahser Road. Near this intersection is the Redford Theatre
, which is now over 75 years old and still showing movies with the accompaniment of the original Barton theater organ
Palmer Woods Historic District
Known for its elm-lined streets, large brick homes, and Tudor style architecture, Palmer Woods is located on the west side of Detroit. It is bordered by 7 mile, 8 mile, Woodward, and the Sherwood Forest neighborhood. The area was developed from farmland in the 1920s as an exclusive enclave for the business class. Lots are large, with ample room for trees, play equipment, and a good expanse of grass. While white flight as well as an outbreak of Dutch Elm disease in the 1970s, took some of the luster off the fashionable community, it is still the home of physicians, politicians, business owners, artists, executives and their families.
Parkland is a neighborhood in far western Detroit, bordering Warrendale. It is roughly bounded by West Warren, Ann Arbor Trail, West Parkway, and Parkland.
Located south of the University of Detroit-Mercy campus and bounded by Livernois, Idaho, Puritan and Fenkell, Pilgrim Village was developed during the 1920s. Like many other nearby neighborhoods Pilgrim Village was a stable middle class neighborhood for years. During the 1970s and 1980s, Pilgrim Village started to go into a decline. Pilgrim Village is also the birthplace of the Honey Baked Ham Company
, which started on Fenkell in 1957.
Poletown was originally a Detroit neighborhood bordering Hamtramck; the high proportion of Polish immigrants gave the neighborhood its name. The neighborhood was destroyed despite a widespread campaign led by Ralph Nader and local community activists in 1981 to make way for a General Motors assembly plant. The plant now manufactures Cadillac automobiles.
Located in Northwest Detroit, Rosedale Park includes the original Rosedale Park and North Rosedale Park, , two historic Detroit neighborhoods of several thousand homes that were annexed by the City of Detroit on September 18, 1925. Its homes date to the 1920s and consist of English Tudors, French Normandy Revivals, American colonials, Dutch, Georgian, Spanish Revivals and Cape Cods and bungalows. In North Rosedale Park, there is a civic association (NRPCA), club house and park. In a unique situation, the club house, built prior to annexation, is owned and maintained by the NRPCA/residents. The Park lot was deeded by the sub-divider to the North Rosedale Park Civic Association, and is the only privately owned neighborhood recreation facility in the city of Detroit. Year round traditions in Rosedale Park include Art Shows and Fairs, Concerts, home tours, neighborhood block parties and the city's largest block/garage sale encompassing 30 blocks within the community. There are also several sports leagues sponsored by the NRPCA. The Rosedale Park Community House is also home to the Jim Dandy Ski Club.. Founded in 1958, JDSC is the oldest (and possibly the only remaining) African-American ski club in the world.
Springwells Village in southwest Detroit is near the Ford Motor Company River Rouge Plant. Springwells Village is largely residential, and in 2002, part of Springwells Village was recognized as a national historic district.
Virginia Park Historic District
The Virginia Park Historic District is a small historic neighborhood located along both sides of Virginia Park St. from Woodward Avenue to Lodge Freeway Service Drive.
Warrendale is one of Detroit's largest neighborhoods. Its approximate borders are Joy Road to the north, Ford Road to the south, Greenfield road to the east and the Rouge River
to the west. Warrendale borders the communities of Dearborn
and Dearborn Heights
and is composed of bungalows dating from the 1930s to the 1950s. Warrendale is mostly African American and is still a busy strip, although most of its Polish-style markets, bakeries and restaurants are gone or have changed ownership. A large influx of Arab immigrants throughout the twentieth century have also contributed to the character of the neighborhood and the types of businesses found along its main street Warren Avenue.
Rouge Park runs through part of Warrendale. Located on each side of the Rouge River, the park has a large picnic area, a playground and swimming pool.
Washington Boulevard Historic District
The Washington Boulevard Historic District is located in downtown Detroit, along Washington Boulevard between State and Clifford streets. It includes the Book-Cadillac Hotel
, the Book Tower
, the Industrial-Stevens Apartments
, and Washington Square (Trolley Plaza)
among other architecturally significant buildings.
West Vernor-Junction Historic District
The West Vernor–Junction Historic District, which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places, is adjacent to Mexicantown and contains a large vibrant Latino community and resurgent neighborhoods. It includes the historic Most Holy Redeemer Church
which was once estimated as the largest Catholic parish in North America.
West Vernor-Lawndale Historic District
The West Vernor-Lawndale Historic District is a commercial historic district located along West Vernor Highway between Cabot and Ferris. The district includes 30 acres and 10 buildings
West Vernor-Springwells Historic District
The West Vernor-Springwells Historic District is a commercial historic district located along West Vernor Highway between Honorah and Norman. The district includes 80 acres and 28 buildings.
West Village Historic District
West Village is located on Detroit's near east side. It is named for its location just west of Indian Village Historic District
and is composed of many Victorian homes and four squares with apartment buildings and row houses interspersed in between. The compact and walkable urban neighborhood is diverse and eclectic in both its housing options and residents. Its advantageous location just 2 miles east of downtown Detroit and minutes from Belle Isle Park and the new Detroit Riverwalk have increased the neighborhoods popularity in recent years. Many historic homes and apartment buildings have recently been restored. Its commercial areas include a short stretch along Agnes Street in the center of the neighborhood and along Kercheval and busy Jefferson Avenue. Its 12 blocks are bound by Jefferson to the south, Kercheval to the north, Parker to the east, and Seyburn to the west. Islandview lies immediately to the West of West Village. West Village is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Woodbridge Historic District
Detroit's Woodbridge neighborhood is located about 2 miles northwest of downtown Detroit between Grand River Avenue and the Lodge Freeway. The neighborhood was primarily developed between 1870 and 1920 with a large number of single and two family residences. The primary commercial districts in the neighborhood were located along Grand River, Trumbull, Twelfth and Fourteenth. The main architectural style prevalent throughout Woodbridge is Queen Anne, as well as Colonial Revival, Georgian Revival, and 'cottage' type architecture. Today, Woodbridge is one of Detroit's most rapidly gentrifying neighborhoods as nearby Wayne State University continues to grow and surrounding areas see new development.
- Aviation Subdivision
- Baldwin Park
- Blackstone Park
- Carbon Works
- Castle Rouge
- Chandler Park
- Conner Creek
- Core City
- East Village
- Eight Mile-Wyoming
- Eliza Howell
- Elmwood Park
- English Village
- Five Points
- Forest Park
- Franklin Park
- G.S.G Area (Grand River, Schoolcraft, Greenfield Area)
- Gold Coast
- Green Acres
- Joseph Barry Subdivision
- LaSalle Gardens
- LaSalle College Park
- Marina District
- Martin Park
- Millennium Village
- Milwaukee Junction
- Minock Park
- Mohican Regent
- North Rosedale Park
- Oakman Boulevard
- Oakwood Heights
- Poletown East
- Regent Park
- Mies van der Rohe Residential District
- Russell Woods
- Sherwood Forest Historic District
- Southwest Detroit
- State Fair Grounds
- The Eye
- University District
- Van Steuban
- West Canfield Historic District
- Westside Industrial
- Westwood Park
- Zone 8