Thursday, September 28, 2006

DPW's Bulk Trash Schedule

The City of Detroit has (finally) finalized its bulk trash collection schedule. For most of Warrendale, the collection won't resume until November after all.

You can find the exact days for your home by entering your address on the page that is hyperlinked below.

DPW's Bulk Trash Schedule

Fire in Warrendale

There was a fire shortly after 8 p.m. yesterday in an abandoned home at the southwest corner of Clayburn and Diversey. Six trucks from the Detroit Fire Department responded quickly and had the fire out before it had a chance to spread to nearby homes.

I captured the tail-end of the fire itself last night on my camera phone. Those blurry things with light on them really are fire trucks, I swear.

I went back during the day to grab a few shots of the house itself. It looks like the building could still be salvaged. However, since it was an abandoned building to begin with - I'm not holding my breath on it happening any time soon.

I have a hunch that this was a case of arson, simply because it's a fire in an abandoned home and there was no other obvious cause.

Again, kudos go out to everyone at the Detroit Fire Department for getting this one under control so fast.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Business Development in Warrendale

There has been a phenominal amount of new businesses opening in Warrendale; along with existing businesses getting spruced up.

The old Norgetown Laundromat is latest one. They are still doing work on it, but they have the old windows boarded over (pretty sure that's just temporary), the old sign removed and a new one on the roof. I've also noticed a lot of folks doing work inside of the building.

Also, Movie Mania Video (18251 W Warren Ave - (313) 982-1500) got a spiffy make-over recently. The place looks really good.

Another Illegal Eviction

Okay - I'm really starting to worry about all of the folks who own rental properties in Warrendale. Do none of them ever read a newspaper?

Yesterday, I reported about one such landlord on Brace who failed to provide the new legally required roll-off container - and promptly received a rather substantial fine from the City.

And then last night, I noticed the aftermath of a second such illegal eviction over on Ashton.

Really, now. How much money does someone have to pay out in fines before they get a clue?

Bulk Trash in Warrendale

Okay - so everyone who has read this blog (or any of the newspapers) knows that the City is bringing back bulk trash collection in October. However, anyone who has looked at a calendar lately should also know that it's still September.

This means that no one should have stuff out for bulk trash pick-up for another couple of weeks. Anyone who does is subject to a rather large ($200, if I recall correctly) fine from the City.

So, everyone, please do yourself a favor and find somewhere to store your junk for the time being. I mention this because I've seen a few folks who look like they have stuff out for bulk-trash collection, like this person on Ashton.

Seriously - if you're looking to blow a couple hundred bucks then just take me out for an evening of drinking. I guarantee you it'll be a lot more fun than leaving your trash lying around.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

What the...

There are moments when I simply cannot believe that I actually live in a major city. For example, I was walking in Warrendale over the weekend and came across a rooster that was walking along the street.
A rooster!

(Yeah, I know - it's hard to make out on the crappy picture from my camera phone but trust me, it really was a rooster.) I simply couldn't believe it.

Some Landlords Never Learn

Some folks just never learn.

The Detroit City Council amended the City Code two weeks ago; requiring landlords to provide roll-off containers who any household items that an evicted tenant might not be able to cart away during an eviction. The new legal requirement was well publicized in the major daily newspapers and in this blog.

In spite of that, some nitwit did an illegal eviction in Warrendale this morning (6730 Brace, to be precise) and failed to provide the required roll-off container. I called the 3-1-1 Call Center when I noticed it this afternoon and was told by the operator that someone else in the neighborhood had already reported it.

The nitwit landlord is now facing a fine that will range from $200 - $1,000 depending on whether or not this is his or her first offense; far more than what it would've cost to rent a roll-off container.

Oh, and if anyone wants to earn a couple of extra bucks - the oven (pictured above) and a couple of other things could easily be sold for scrap. If you've got a truck and someone to help with the lifting, I don't think anyone would complain about you grabbing it.

Monday, September 25, 2006



The internet is a weird place some times.

This morning, I was surfing around - looking for something that I've since forgotten about. As I was bouncing from page to page, I came across a reference to someone that I knew back in high school - Andrew "Rocky" Raczkowski.

Granted, no one was calling him "Rocky" back then. I guess he added later in life.

And it turns out that he now owns a business in Warrendale - Accuform Printing & Graphics (7231 Southfield Fwy.), which evidentally is a part of Mainline Communications.

For moments like this, I now have "It's A Small Word" on my iPod.

Manoogian money pit should be sold - 09/22/06 - The Detroit News Online

Manoogian money pit should be sold - 09/22/06 - The Detroit News Online

The Detroit News ran an editorial last week; arguing that the City of Detroit should sell the Manoogian Mansion. I disagree with a lot of the editorials that the News runs. However, I am in complete agreement with them on this one.

Mayor Kwame M. Kilpatrick has asked Detroiters to make a lot of sacrifices in order to create what he refers to as the NEXT Detroit. He's asked to make due with fewer police officers (DPD currently has 1,200 vacant officer posititions), to pay $300 per year for trash collection and to sell off portions of River Rouge Park.

All of this, of course, is on top of the high taxes and low levels of City services that have been a hallmark of Detroit for far too long.

I believe it's time for the Mayor to make a few extra sacrifices as well. It's time to either put the Manoogian Mansion on the market or get serious about raising money for the non-profit that former Mayor Dennis W. Archer set up to pay for the Mansion's up-keep.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Update on Tenant Evictions

I had previously reported on Mayor Kwame M. Kilpatrick and the War on Illegal Dumping. One of the areas that he had been unable to make progress on was a proposed amendment to the City Code, which would put an end to tenants having their stuff put on the curb during an eviction. Under the Mayor's plan, landlords are to provide a roll-off container for any possessions that a tenant may have and to have said containers removed within 48 hours of an eviction.

As of my report on how things stood 3 months into the Mayor's War on Illegal Dumping, that proposed change was still pending before the Detroit City Council. Kenneth V. Cockrel, Jr. , President of the Detroit City Council, had originally indicated that it wouldn't likely come to a vote until October.

However, when President Cockrel made a visit to the Warrendale Community Organization for their September general membership meeting, members of the W.C.O. expressed their concern about the delays.

One week later - the change has happened.

As of last week, landlords are now required to provide a roll-off container whenever one of their residents are evicted. Those containers must also be removed within 48 hours of the eviction.

And folks wonder why I say coming to a W.C.O. meeting is so important?

Anyway, the next W.C.O. meeting will be on Monday, October 2 at 7 p.m. in the Activities Building of Sts. Peter & Paul Church.

Detroit brings back bulk collection

Detroit brings back bulk collection

I had reported a couple of time previously that the City of Detroit would bring back its bulk collection of trash this fall. The Freep Press is now reporting that it'll be back beginning in October (slightly earlier than I was originally told).

I've asked the City for an update on when the first pick up will be in Warrendale, but haven't heard back from them. As soon as I do, I'll let everyone know.

Friday, September 15, 2006

One-on-One With Mayor Kilpatrick

Detroit residents have an opportunity to offer suggestions for improving their City and voice their concerns directly to Mayor Kwame M. Kilpatrick on Saturday, September 23 from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. in the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center.

Whether your concerned about police response, illegal dumping or anything else involving City government, this is your opportunity to speak with Mayor Kilpatrick directly. The Mayor’s One-on-One is an event for City residents who want to discuss their ideas, share their concerns and opinions. City department directors and representatives also will be available to meet with residents and address their issues or concerns.

Due to the limited number of spaces available, residents must register to participate by calling 313-628-2689 between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.; leaving their name, address and telephone number.
Appointments will be made on a first-come, first-served basis. Residents will receive a confirmation, including directions and information on parking via mail and/or a telephone call.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Detroit teachers have a tentative deal

Detroit teachers have a tentative deal

Mayor Kwame M. Kilpatrick managed to broker a deal early this morning, which could bring an end a 16-day old strike as early as Thurday.

On the noon news today, a couple of Detroit public school teachers were complaining that it was unfair that the Mayor got involved in this labor dispute. It's too bad that more of those teachers don't actually live in Detroit. If they did, they'd be in a better position to do something about who is in the Mayor's Office.

Of course, that would also mean that more of them would have to put their own kids into the Detroit Public Schools.

Anyway, now that the strike is essentially resolved, I believe it's time for all of the relevant parties to come together and come up with a plan to improve academic performance in our schools.

More than 90% of 7th-graders at Carver Elementary in Warrendale failed to meet the state's minimium standards for academic performance.

That is totally unacceptable. Furthermore, I argue that anyone would ignore, excuse or attempt to rationalize student performance like that doesn't deserve to call themselves a teacher.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Goodfellas Plaza

Construction continues to move along nicely on the new Goodfellas Plaza, which is the new retail complex that used to be the location of Goodfellas Wear on W. Warren and Penrod.

I'm just glad that the new building doesn't look like there's a spot for them to put another one of those murals on it. (Too many windows, or just the right number - depending on your perspective).

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Mail Bag: The Trash Fee (Part 3)

Regarding my error as whether or not folks who make less $40,000 per year, but are under age 65, are eligible for a discount on the trash fee (they're not) Cracktown USA wrote in to say:
I figured it was too good to be true. :)

Love your blog. Can't wait till I get a chance to explore Warrendale. Sounds like a great neighborhood.
Thanks for being so understanding. I hope you do explore Warrendale sometime soon.

Oh, and as far as the dilemna you mentioned over in your blog - filling the crack den with sandbags is one option, but I think concrete would work even better. LOL

NOF Grants for Warrendale Residents

The Warrendale Community Organization has received $100,000 grant to help pay for home repairs for low-income residents within its boundries (Warrendale, west of the Southfield Freeway). Residents who live in owner-occupied homes are eligible to apply for a grant that will provide assistance for things like roofing, heating, plumbing, concrete and electrical improvements.

You can get pick-up an application at a W.C.O. meeting (the next one is this evening at 7 p.m. and there will be another one on Monday, October 2). If you can't make it tonight, and don't want to wait a month, you can request an application by sending a self-addressed stamped 8 1/2" x 11" envelope (with 2 onces worth of postage) to:

Robert Franko
6088 Grandville
Detroit, MI 48228

I haven't heard anything about whether or not the folks in the Warren Avenue Community Organization (Warrendale - east of the Southfield Freeway) have gotten such a grant.