By: Terry Foster
The other day I drove through old neighborhoods on Detroit’s east side.
There were open fields, closed warehouses and factories and enough open space to build a dozen football stadiums.
Why not put the Wayne County jails there along with the court houses? There was an opportunity for Detroit and Wayne County to think outside the box and once again we failed. The big news the past few weeks has been the over budgeted Wayne county jail. Construction has been halted and now we have another eye sore downtown.
They never should have built the jail there anyway. Detroit is trying to grow a pedestrian area between Greektown, Harmony Park and the stadium district. But do you know what is in the way of doing that?
There are two court houses, a jail house, a half constructed jail and two churches. Keep the churches. But get rid of the other stuff that breeds criminals and makes it intimidating for people that want to enjoy weekends downtown. There was a chance to build a court house district away from downtown, have parking and keep the criminals away from downtown.
The Frank Murphy Hall of Justice and 36th District Court have been around forever. But they are now in the wrong spot at the wrong time. I can show you a dozen other areas where this could have gone and thrived.
Detroit and Wayne County had a chance to make change. Instead they are behind the times again and this time way over budgeted.
(I will have a book signing Wednesday (7 pm) at the Clinton Township Buffalo Wild Wings on 15 Mile and Utica and Thursday (7 pm) at Tap at MGM Grand Detroit. Twitter: TerryFoster971. Email: Terry.Foster@cbsradio.com)