- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 9, 2014

DETROIT (AP) - An idea for transforming a shuttered Detroit Public Works facility into a retail center and community gathering space is gaining momentum.

Kathy Wendler, president of the Southwest Detroit Business Association, tells The Detroit News (https://bit.ly/1zIWH0q ) that her goal has moved closer to reality as part of a pilot project spearheaded by the Michigan Municipal League.

The “Vernor Crossing” project is envisioned as a flexible plaza space for community events and a shared market space. The $17 million concept would be constructed in phases and situated on the seven-acre site at the corner of Vernor and Livernois.

Wendler says the association has been talking with the city and working on a plan for the former Detroit Public Works yard for several years. The area was among eight statewide selected last month to participate in the league’s PlacePlans project.

The joint effort between the league and Michigan State University’s School of Planning, Design and Construction is led by the Michigan State Housing Development Authority. It aids communities in designing projects that promote economic development and walkable districts.

Wendler says the plan “defines a vision for the future of this key site in southwest Detroit” and “will continue to build a sense of belonging to, and pride in, our community.” She says that the next step will be securing funding for projects in the plan.

Luke Forrest, program manager for the PlacePlans program, said a number of Detroit development organizations “collectively directed us” toward the project.

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Online:

https://placemaking.mml.org

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Information from: The Detroit News, https://detnews.com/

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