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« Detroit News Roundup for Thursday, August 23, 2007
» The glass two thirds full, one third spiteful

Detroit News Roundup for Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Hip-hop group, liquor company lend support to AIDS cause

They hail from the Conant Gardens neighborhood on the East Side, and their hearts remain in their city as they travel the globe. And Detroit hip-hop group Slum Village came home last week, teaming up with Remy Martin to donate $7,500 to AIDS Partnership Michigan.

The donation, which was presented Friday at APM’s Detroit office, was part of the popular cognac maker’s Black Music Month program, which kicked off in June. Remy Martin picked 10 up-and-coming artists to play shows in their hometowns. Each artist or group picked a charitable cause, and the company made a donation on their behalf.

[via pride source.com]

Marygrove College Receives Skillman Foundation Grant to Operate …

DETROIT, Aug. 22, 2007 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) — Marygrove College has received a grant of $700,000 from The Skillman Foundation to support the Good Schools Center at the College during the 2007-2008 academic year. Marygrove had been the site of the Good Schools Resource Center from 2003 through 2007.

[via Primenewswire (press release)]

New Paradise Valley to showcase Detroit’s black culture

DETROIT (AP) - A famous Detroit neighborhood is poised for a comeback.

A small enclave of shops and buildings on the northeast side of downtown will be designated the new Paradise Valley.

City leaders hope to attract music clubs, galleries and other vendors tapping into Detroit’s black art and cultural heritage.

George N’Namdi, who owns an art gallery in the area, predicts the revived Paradise Valley will be a magnet for tourists of all colors.

I hope it does better than another historic ethnic neighborhood that was bulldozed in the name of progress and “moved” to another location. I’m talking about Chinatown.
[via WLNS]

First day of state fair family tradition for some

DETROIT — Today’s muggy start to the Michigan State Fair was not enough to keep families away, even as cloudy skies threatened to spew rain.

“We come every year on the first day,” said 59-year-old Patricia “Granny Pat” Sims as she doled out hand sanitizer from a huge container to her grandchildren. “It’s a family tradition. I like to see my grandchildren have fun.”

The 159th annual fair will run through Labor Day. It is the oldest fair in the country and gives people a chance to see the state’s agricultural past, organizers said.

[via DetNews.com]

Borders Rewards(R) Program Surpasses 20 Million Members

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Aug. 22 /PRNewswire/ — Membership in Borders Rewards(R)-the free customer loyalty program for Borders and Waldenbooks customers nationwide-now exceeds 20 million. The program, which launched in February 2006 and continues to grow rapidly, is now one of the largest customer loyalty programs in the specialty retail industry, reaching 18% of all U.S. households.

[via PR Newswire (press release)]

Engineering firm adds jobs in Southfield

Bolton & Associates said it will add 150 new jobs in Southfield as part of the firm’s expansion plan.

The Maryland-based engineering firm said the Michigan Economic Development Corp. and the City of Southfield were instrumental in working with Bolton & Associates to increase its presence in metro Detroit.

[via Detroit Free Press]

Con-way Freight to expand in Ann Arbor

The freight transportation company, which is a unit of California-based Con-way Inc., has about 300 people working at its Ann Arbor facilities. The company also said it was closing down some of its operations in California and Texas as part of the move to Ann Arbor.

Officials at Con-way Inc. said its three regional units (Con-way Freight Central, Con-way Freight Southern and Con-way Freight Western) will be consolidated and moved to the Michigan market, effective immediately.

[via Detroit Free Press]

Women the world over find veil limits job choice

Bangladeshi American Syeda Begum, 19, tries on a Niqab at a store that sells fashions to Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi women in Hamtramck, Michigan, August 19, 2007. Women who cover up for their faith may encounter problems getting some kinds of work outside the Muslim world, particularly jobs requiring them to interact with the public.
[via ABC News]

A fest reborn

The aroma of chicken tikka and frying samosas tend to lure unsuspecting downtown office-goers to Hart Plaza each year but exquisitely spiced food isn’t the only draw of the Festival of India, which last year summoned more than 30,000 attendees. The weekend is one of those “something for everyone” affairs.

The festival begins around noon on Friday, simply to cater to the work-lunch crowd, and then again officially that evening with a “Colors of India” opening ceremony to celebrate India’s 60th year of independence from Britain. A Miss India Michigan pageant will start the evening, followed by a performance with the boy- bandesque pop star Raghav.

“My friends and I would spend all summer practicing for the dances — it was one of the highlights of the year,” says Sharon Thomas, one of the organizers and a former Miss Michigan India. “So when I had an opportunity to help restart the festival, there was no doubt in my mind — I want my kids to be able to experience what I once did.”

Info: Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to midnight; Sunday from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Hart Plaza, at the foot of Woodward Ave., downtown Detroit; call 248-552-8833 or visit festivalofindiadetroit.com for more
[via Detroit Metro Times]

Livernois median protested

A small but vocal group of residents and business owners said the newly constructed Livernois median between McNichols and 8 Mile, designed to ease traffic flow and prevent accidents, has upended their lives and livelihoods.

The group of more than two dozen people railed against the $1.2-million project at a Tuesday hearing hosted by Detroit City Councilwoman JoAnn Watson.

I’m skeptical for two reasons, one, JoAnn Watson, and two, is it really that troublesome to drive an extra block in your car so that the area can look nicer and be safer?
[via Detroit Free Press]

People with Arab ancestry play vital role in area economy

“What I think is really important to take away from this study is that Arab Americans act as great ambassadors and very important bridges for the U.S. to the rest of the world,” Thompson said.

“Some Arab Americans own their own businesses here, and in another parts of the world, most likely their home country. They help us build global relationships for the U.S., especially little landlocked Southeast Michigan.”

The REMI model calculated a multiplier of 2.06 to 2.08. This means that, on average, every Arab American job helps in contributing more than one additional job to the region.

Something to keep in mind when mayors of cities like Sterling Heights or Warren spout off xenophobic remarks about Iraqi asylum-seekers coming to their cities. I wouldn’t really consider a region surrounded by the world’s largest freshwater seas with a water link to the Atlantic Ocean to be landlocked.
[via Dearborn Press and Guide]

Barton Green development gets green light in Ann Arbor

Not all of Ann Arbor’s dense development is taking place downtown. Go a few miles north of the city’s core, beyond the Huron River and almost to M-14 and you can see the spot for Tree City’s latest residential development, Barton Green.

The developer plans to build 260 brownstone-style town homes and condos on 32 acres bordered by Pontiac Trail to the east, Skydale Drive to south and M-14 to the west. The two- and three-story buildings will be built on the east end of the linear piece of property. A park dedicated to open space will go on a few acres on the parcel’s west end.

Possibly, hopefully better then all that stuff built by Singh next to “downtown” Novi and in other neighborhoods throughout the suburbs. The buildings themselves are not too bad and the density isn’t either but the neighborhoods are ruined by the surroundings and a lack of any sort of urban street grid feel. It’s a shame to spend so much money to try to build something urban, come close, but fall short. I suggest they talk to someone like Murph of Common Monkeyflower.
[via Model D]

Detroit Design Competition Receives Statewide Applicants

For anyone still interested in entering “Detroit’s Design SuperStar Challenge,” the application deadline is quickly approaching. All entries must be received by August 24 and will
be accepted in-person at Garden Court Condominiums, located at 2900 East Jefferson Avenue, or online at www.gardencourtcondos.com. All design boards must be delivered to the Garden Court no later than 4 p.m. on August 24. The three finalists will be announced on August 29.

[via pride source.com]

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« Detroit News Roundup for Thursday, August 23, 2007
» The glass two thirds full, one third spiteful