Detroit may have lost 25 percent of its residents between 2000 and 2010, but recently the city has had an influx of young professionals eager to call Detroit their home according to a recent Bloomberg Report.
According to statistics, people are moving back to Detroit one neighborhood at a time. Midtown, one such bustling neighborhood, shows 95% of the 5,884 housing units as filled and more are in the process of being built. With the new residents came 26 new shops and restaurants, which opened in the last two years according to Midtown Detroit, an economic development organization.
Part of this flock to Detroit can be attributed to the Live Downtown Incentive, which has so far brought in just under 400 new residents. With this program, employers like Blue Cross Blue Shield and Compuware pay a percentage of residents’ rent if they move downtown. The nine participating companies have put $2 million a year into the program, giving workers $2,500 their first year of renting and $1,000 for their second year. This incentive also applies to buyers, giving them a one-time payment of $20,000 to put down on a home. This is a huge incentive as the median home price in June, according to Realcomp was $9,500.
Another sign of population increase is a Whole Foods Market that is scheduled to open in 2013. As many Detroiters can attest to, this is a big deal as grocery stores are severally lacking and this is the first national chain grocery store that the city has managed to get in years.
Aside from new business, the increase in population also means that Detroit is becoming safer. The Wayne State University Police Department, which shares patrols with Detroit police, reported that major crimes in Midtown are down 38% from 2008 to 2011. Detroit as a whole has seen a 16% drop.
These reports have made some, like State Representative Jimmy Womack, hopeful that the rehab efforts will spread outward.
Read the full report here.
Source: Bloomberg Business Week, Photograph by Theodor Barth/laif/Redux