Monday, July 28, 2014

Derelict apartment building demolished

Formerly a blighted building - Photo by Frank Nemecek
The burned out, and mostly collapsed, apartment building at corner of Tireman and Pierson Streets has been demolished after sitting in its derelict condition for more than decade.

Former Mayor Kwame M. Kilpatrick proposed demolishing more than dozen large commercial structures, including this one, back in 2007 as a way to help stimulate Detroit's local economy. That, of course, never happened and the building continued to sit there.

The building is demolished now. More importantly, trees and grass has been planted on the site. This means that the land that building used to sit on will blend perfectly into Rouge Park.

I'm glad to see it happen.

Friday, July 25, 2014

LED Streetlights coming to the Warrendale neighborhood

Contractors installing light poles - Photo by Frank Nemecek
Contractors from Detroit's Public Lighting Authority have been busy lately installing removing old streetlights and installing new ones. Their first step is to install a new pole for the lights.

Once that pole has had a chance to settle in the ground for a few days, they will install a new LED streetlight onto it.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Open Letter to Jim Diamond (and everyone else downtown)

Downtown and Midtown Detroit are becoming expensive. They are becoming so expensive, in fact that Jim Diamond of Ghetto Recorders can no longer afford to operate there and is considering a move to the suburbs.

An article about this fact, by the way, is available from The Detroit News here.

That's a little sad because he is one of the creative pioneers who helped to make the rebirth of downtown possible.

However, if Jim Diamond or anyone else is interested, I can show them a bunch of really cool spaces in Detroit's Warrendale neighborhood on the far west side that would be a great spot for you.

Plus, you'll be closer to Gracie See Pizzeria, named the best traditional pizza in North America at the International Pizza Expo, as well as Tijuana's Mexican Kitchen, which is one of the best Mexican restaurants in town. You'll also be closer to some shawarma that makes the stuff served downtown seem like left-over Chef Boyardee.

And when you need to burn off all of those calories, you'll also be closer to the largest park in Detroit - one that's bigger than Belle Isle, Campus Martius, Grand Circus, and Hart Plaza combined.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Brennan Pools Re-Open

Brennan Pools in Rouge Park re-opened today after having been closed for nearly two years. The pools were originally closed by former Mayor Dave Bing due to budget cuts.

The pools were able to restored and opened again thanks to $3 million fundraising campaign that was spearheaded by State Representative Harvey Santana and supported by the Speak of the House Jase Bolger. The largest donor to the cause was Lear Corporation, although a variety of other partners contributed as well.

The pools will be open for the rest of the summer every day from 12:30 p.m. until 8 p.m..

Friday, June 27, 2014

Laws and ordinances that relate to fireworks

I used to love fireworks as a kid. Today, however, I hear them so often that I am simply sick of them.

I breathed a tiny sigh of relief, therefore, when I got this sheet in my email from Ricardo Moore, our police commissioner, that outlines the various laws and ordinances regarding fireworks in Detroit. The short version: most of this stuff violates an existing city ordinance.

Now, we just have to get someone to enforce those ordinances.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Consumers Beware: 5 Tips to Keep you Scam-Free this Summer

For the majority of Americans who plan to take a vacation, attend a concert, or work on their home or garden this summer, this season comes with its own unique consumer challenges. As this week's Tip of the Week feature, here are the top five scams and frauds to be alert for this time of year:

  1. Don’t buy gas additives that claim to make fuel last longer. Even though gas prices go up in the summer, the Environmental Protection Agency has not found any product that significantly improves gas mileage, and some could damage a car’s engine or increase exhaust emissions.
  2. Unlicensed home repair or landscaping contractors may come to your door to offer services. Always research contractors, pay for services upon completion—not ahead of time— and consider using a signed contract outlining the work to be done and the exact price.
  3. Interested in a summer concert or festival? If you buy tickets from a major vendor, remember surcharges and additional fees may be tacked onto the listed price. Some venues require the same credit card used to purchase tickets be presented when the tickets are picked up, so if you’re buying tickets for someone as a gift, they may have difficulty getting them at will-call.
  4. When renting a beach or lake house for vacation, make sure the property actually exists. Do your homework before paying— check out the owner or rental company, consult maps and read the lease carefully. Pay with an online payment service or a credit card so you can dispute the charges if something goes wrong.
  5. When flying, make sure you’re aware of the airline’s baggage charges and their policy when it comes to bumping passengers. A lot of airlines “bump” depending on how late you checked in, so check in ASAP!

For more advice on protecting your money, order the Consumer Action Handbook, which is available here. Also, follow on Facebook and Twitter. If you have your own consumer questions, ask us using the hashtag #AskMarietta, and they’ll answer them live during a Google hangout on Tuesday, June 24 at 3 p.m. ET.   

Don't leave your keys in your car overnight

I see some rather strange things as I go running or walking through the streets of Detroit's Warrendale neighborhood. (Okay - I see strange things everywhere. It's just the ones in Warrendale that fit this blog.) Regardless, I was surprised to see a set of keys dangling from a car door on Ashton near Kirkwood recently.

I also wonder which happened first: the owner coming back to retrieve his or her keys or someone taking advantage of this situation and stealing said car.