America’s ‘Automotive City’, Detroit, has suffered its share of setbacks: the demise of car manufacturing, white flight, black flight, the economic crisis and a huge mountain of debt. Thousands of houses still stand derelict, inhabited by drugdealers or with trees growing through the roof. The city went bankrupt in 2013 – a blessing in disguise, as its 18 billion dollars of debt were erased. The city is on its way back up: downtown is undergoing a marked renaissance and Ford Motor Company, believe it or not, is actually returning to Detroit. Ford will be setting up a new mobility research center in Detroit’s beautiful old train station, which stood empty for decades.
In Detroit I made a video interview with the head of urban planning, Maurice Cox, about Detroit’s upturn – and what still remains to be done.