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City: One Challenge Winner Debuts Mobility Hub at Michigan Central Station


City: One Challenge Winner Debuts Mobility Hub at Michigan Central Station

DETROIT, June 9, 2021 - After working alongside Detroit residents to develop and propose new ways to improve how people get around the city, the community around Michigan Central Station is about to see how one of those ideas can actually work.

One of the three winning proposals chosen during the City: One Michigan Central Station Challenge, the Mobility Hub proposed by Mercy Education Project is ready to enjoy a month-long pilot. Located at Roosevelt Park in front of Michigan Central Station, the new Mobility Hub aims to provide safe and easy access to transportation information and mobility services – and act as a gathering place for the community.

“We love how practical the students’ idea is to bring the different transportation options together in a space that is welcoming, useful, and engaging with the community,” said Sam Krassenstein, Deputy Director of Mobility Innovation at the City of Detroit. “We hope that the success of this pilot will be an example that can be replicated to increase mobility options for Detroiters in other parts of the City and appreciate all the effort from our project partners to help bring the hub project idea to reality.”

The Mobility Hub was the brainchild of eight 11th grade high school students from Detroit. These young women envisioned these hubs as places that would not only offer information about how to use different mobility services – including buses, bikes, and electric scooters – but also shine the spotlight on local businesses in the area and offer convenient features for visitors.

“Mercy Education Project is excited to present a community space for all of Detroit to enjoy. Our 2020-2021 CCR girls worked tirelessly, even though the pandemic, to create their version of a mobility hub. During this pilot we hope everyone uses the hub and help decide how future Mobility Hub should function, specifically in Detroit.”  - Nicole Meunier, Director of Development and Major Gifts at Mercy Education.

Open from 6AM to 11PM, the hub pilot will run until June 25 and offer the following amenities:

  • A digital monitor that supplies information about transit options, local businesses, and community services.
  • Easy access to a variety of mobility solutions, including a nearby DDOT bus stop, bike racks, Spin scooters, MoGo station, and convenient pick-up spots for ride-hailing services.
  • A well-lit safe space for community residents that offers a sheltered waiting area, nearby picnic tables, WiFi, and smart device charging, plus a makeshift stage for pop-ups or performances.
  • Murals created by local artists in collaboration with Garage Cultural that spotlight themes of women’s empowerment, movement, and mobility.

During the pilot, Wayne Health/Wayne State University will also deploy its mobile health units to the Mobility Hub for two weeks. These specially outfitted vehicles allow medical staff to offer a variety of convenient health services for residents, including testing and vaccinations.

Launched in 2019, the City: One Michigan Central Station Challenge is a crowd-sourcing platform created by Ford to help cities prepare for the future by identifying new mobility designs and innovations that could improve the way people get around. The platform program brings together government officials, local residents, startups, and entrepreneurs in an effort to understand mobility issues and design solutions.

“Seeing ideas like the Mobility Hub come to life in service of the community is exactly why Ford developed the City: One Challenge platform,” said Gina Schrader, City Solutions Midwest Manager, Ford Motor Company. “We believe that cities can dramatically improve mobility by engaging directly with local communities and businesses, and this is just one example of what’s possible when a forum like City: One facilitates dialogue and collaboration in service of a larger purpose.”

With a goal of improving mobility for people living in, working in, and visiting the community surrounding Michigan Central Station, the Challenge encouraged participants to submit mobility solutions that complement existing transportation services. The Mobility Hub was one of three winners chosen out of 164 total submissions.

The City thanks all of the partners that contributed towards the successful launch of this project: Mercy Education Project, Ford City Solutions Team, Office of Future Mobility & Electrification, SmithGroup, Christman | Brinker Corktown Transformation JV, Spin, Verizon, Garage Cultural/Art on the Block with artists Dayana Juarez and Demaciiio, Michigan Central, Farmboy Fine Arts, DTE Energy, Laidlaw & Morgan Lighting Group, Pepperl + Fuchs, Disenos Ornamental Iron, Caniff Electric Supply, Edgewood Electric, Brinker Team Construction, FPB STUDIO DESIGN X BUILD, and Wayne Health/Wayne State University.