I-375 Reconnecting Communities Project
The I-375 Reconnecting Communities Project will guide a transformational project that proposes to reconnect the city of Detroit from the physical and emotional division created decades ago in the name of “urban renewal”. This project is led by the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) in partnership with the City of Detroit. The reconnecting communities project is to replace I-375 and the Gratiot Connector with a surface level boulevard and grid that creates a mobility vision prioritizing pedestrians in walkable connections.
MDOT, alongside the boulevard project. is funding a City of Detroit community-centered framework to understand the opportunities and challenges of this endeavor. Working with the community surrounding the project area, and MDOT, we seek to address the challenges posed of the project itself, as well as understanding the fabric of community through capturing the cultural and historic ties of its being. The framework will identify opportunities for growth and quality of life .
While the project will be able to study the limits (envelope) of potential development on the developable parcels resulting from the boulevard design, it cannot address the disposition of land as part of the framework. The land is currently owned by the federal government as part of the interstate highway system. The State of Michigan and City of Detroit will work with the federal government to determine the guidelines governing the transfer of land.
Zoning and Land-Use Study
The City of Detroit’s Planning and Development Department (PDD) seeks proposals from qualified and experienced teams to provide professional services and technical assistance to complete an analysis and provide recommendations for a zoning and land use strategy in coordination with the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) I-375 Reconnecting Communities project, the Gratiot Planning and Environmental Linkages (PEL) Study, and other transportation and neighborhood planning initiatives. This exercise is guided by principles of participatory planning, equitable and inclusive development, smart growth, and “actionable” vision and implementation. This effort will supplement community engagement and urban design framework undertaken by MDOT with the advisement of the City of Detroit as part of the overall I-375 framework project. The purpose of the supplementary Zoning and Land-Use Framework is to ensure that economic and quality of life improvements occur within the I-375 project area to support the connected urban fabric, guide future growth and development as a truly reconnected community and be responsive to the city of Detroit zoning ordinances and legislative approvals process. The City envisions a Detroit built on inclusionary growth, economic opportunity, trust, and a process that results in the creation of a cohesive policy guiding the vision for the City of Detroit, the reconnecting communities project, and residents within and surrounding the I-375 Reconnecting Communities project area. The study will be action-oriented and will result in a structure for sustainable equitable land-use, inclusive of its current and future residents, and setting the policy direction to support future growth an opportunity created by the MDOT project.