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Urbanizing Metro Detroit's Suburbia

The lines between suburban and urban are finally blurring in some Metro Detroit communities. And none too soon. Though our region ranks last in terms of urban revitalization among the 25 largest metros, things are looking up. "You're moving in the right direction," says Christopher Leinberger, senior fellow at The Brookings Institution.

Kidpreneur Teaches Tween Tycoons

Some tweens spend their free time playing XBox and Minecraft while others launch their own start-ups. From business cards to elevator pitches, serial entrepreneur Thanh Tran wants his Kidpreneur program to teach its middle school magnates both the thrill of success and the educational value of failure.

Why They Sit on Their Local School Boards

Let's face it, being a school board member can be a tough and thankless job, especially if you have kids enrolled in the very educational system you help to oversee. To get an insider's view, Metromode's Amy Kuras chats with parents of school-age kids who also serve as school board members in Dearborn, Northville and Royal Oak.

Metro Detroit's Hottest Home Markets

Houses are selling before they're listed. Buyers are getting into bidding wars. Sound familiar? No, it's not a return to the crazed real estate market of 2003... but a few metro Detroit communities are coming back with a vengeance. Why? Well, vibrant urban cores have a lot to do with it. 

10 Things To Do In Metro Detroit Before Summer Ends

The countdown has begun, summer is winding down. And if you're like us, there's a list of stuff you meant to do while the weather was warm and the days were long. But where to start? Well, we've got some thoughts about that...

Metro Detroit DJs: From A - Z

Whether you're a techno veteran or a newbie, it's hard not to notice Detroit's notoriety for beat-matching talent. But how to encapsulate a music scene that we export all over the world? Metromode offers an A-Z primer for those who are looking to wrap their heads around the sounds that make us spin round.

Building The Future: Metro Detroit's Young Architects

Architects look at things a little differently. Where we see empty space or blight, they see the potential for something inspiring, innovative, or grand. It should come as no surprise then that the trio of young architects Metromode spoke to are excited about both their own and Metro Detroit's future.

The Land Of Small Giants

Sometimes bigger isn't better. In Ann Arbor the small giant movement is catching on, and it's attracting some Metro Detroit companies as well. Their philosophy? Profit is good but the bottom line should not be the be all / end all of your company's existence.

Ghastly Plots In Metro Detroit

Happy Horror-ween! Though Metro Detroit is hardly known for our tales of terror (not counting the economy and the Lions, of course), Metromode digs up a pair of local writers who want nothing more than to give you nightmares.

48 Hours In Northville And Plymouth

Norman Rockwell meets urban sophistication. If you want to experience a pair of classic Michigan communities you can't get much more Michigan-y than Plymouth and Northville.And yet these metro Detroit cities are looking forward, adding cafes, condos and galleries to their cozy, walkable downtowns.

Northville's Emerging Arts Community

Shedding its reputation as Metro Detroit's country mouse, Northville is not only turning its downtown into a vibrant place to live and work, it's actively developing a formidable arts community. 

The D Brand and You

The 'D' brand isn't just about pulling in conventions and tourists. With the D Brand Summit, branding gurus are showing us how the power of the 'D' can also attract more talent and business to the region.

Downtowns Become Boomertowns

As Gen-Xers become homebuyers and baby boomers become empty nesters, seniors are reconsidering their suburban retirement options and choosing downtown living. These "ruppies" bring more than just money to urban neighborhoods, they also bring a commitment to getting involved.

Restoration = Evolution

They're building up but not knocking down ó area developers are choosing to redevelop and retrofit Southeast Michigan's historic buildings, and there are more than just tax incentives behind the trend. A look at why the hottest real estate in metro Detroit involves recycling old spaces and what that means for local communities.

Size Matters

To touch the sky or keep things human size? SE Michigan's revitalized downtowns are struggling with the size of their buildings as young professionals look for a more urban experience, leaders see density as a way to combat sprawl and long-time residents worry their community's unique character is compromised.

The Michigan Growth Capital Symposium: More Than Money

Like American Idol, each year local startups strut their stuff at the Michigan Growth Capital Symposium, presenting in 'lightning round' pitch sessions for the attention of venture capital managers and angel investors. But support can mean more than just a quick infusion of cash, it can also spell success for Michigan's economy.

Michigan Music Fests: Mozart To Mosh Pits

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, "Music takes us out of the actual and whispers to us dim secrets that startle our wonder as to who we are." Clearly the man loved his polka. metromode offers up a Summer Music Festival guide worth singing about.

Guest Blogger: Maud Lyon

Our guest blogger for this week is Maud Lyon. Maud is the founding director of the Cultural Alliance, and a consultant for numerous nonprofit organizations.Check back here each week day to read Maud's thoughts on the state of arts and culture in Michigan.

Discipline Five: Get on Base

United Way president Michael Brennan examines the importance of continued success over time in the fifth installment of his series on a Community of Progress.

RAZ Survey: Regional Transit

Mass transit is a hot topic at water coolers throughout southeast Michigan. United Way and Metromode are interested in your thoughts on our regionís transportation options.

Guest Blogger: Dan Gilmartin

Dan Gilmartin is our guest blogger this week. He is the youngest executive director in the 108 year history of the Michigan Municipal League. Dan previously served as the League's deputy director and as an advocate in Lansing and in Washington, where he concentrated on transportation, land use and urban redevelopment. Check back here each week day to read Dan's thoughts on regionalism and how we can build the kind of community that attracts knowledge-based workers.

Survey: Race Relations

While Metro Detroit has been identified as one of the most racially segregated regions in the nation, our growing diversity is one of our greatest strengths. Metromode, United Way, and New Detroit are interested in your thoughts on race relations in this community.

Michigan Freakonomics

"Conventional Wisdom is often wrong." Whether he's writing about abortion, crack dealers or penalty kicks in soccer, "Freakonomic's" author Steven Levitt raises eyebrows and blood pressures with his findings. After a recent lecture at WSU, the rogue economist trained his sights on the Mitten State.

Guest Blogger: Todd Palmer

Todd Palmer is our guest blogger this week. Todd founded Diversified Industrial Staffing, a company that provides staffing for manufacturing, construction and logistics businesses, and Diversified PEOple, a professional employer organization for small businesses. He sits on the board of directors for the Detroit Chapter of Entrepreneurís Organization, and is a recent graduate of the Birthing of Giants class held at MIT. Check back each week day to read Todd's thoughts on keeping, identifying and attracting talent.

Fuelish Thoughts

As the buzz for biofuel grows, Michigan has the opportunity to capitalize on its rural and auto-based communities and emerge as a true innovator. Can a state historically dependent on mineral-based energy play a leading role in the national movement toward alternative fuels?  

Guest Blogger: Brian Balasia

Brian Balasia is our guest blogger this week. Brian founded Digerati Solutions while an aerospace engineering student at U of M. He currently sits on the board of directors for the Detroit Regional Chamber, WIRED, and the U of M Alumni Society.  Check back here each week day to read Brian's thoughts on attracting talent to SE Michigan and nurturing innovation.

Three Big Ideas For Michigan

The time has come for Michigan to make bold choices about how to transform its economy, communities and culture. metromode offers up a trio of initiatives and ideas that challenge conventional thinking and dare the state to think big.

Home Grown

Food that travels 1500 miles to reach your table defies anyone's notion of "fresh." Isn't it time we traded in McDonald's for Old MacDonald?

Running Michigan

Pick a path and pound the pavement. From novice joggers to world-class sprinters, Southeast Michigan has everything you need to maintain a constant level of runner's high.

Guest Blogger: Roger Gullickson

Roger Gullickson is our guest blogger this week.  Roger is the President and CEO of MVP Collaborative since 1996.  He moved to Michigan in 1989 to head FTD's Marketing Group after an international career with Tenneco and Case Corporation.

Check back here each weekday to read Roger's thoughts on Michigan's need for renewal and how it can achieve it. 


Running Michigan: Resources

If you've got two good legs, a few hours a week and a whole lot of willpower, SE Michigan has got pretty much everything you need to maintain a constant level of runner's high.

Guest Blogger: Dennis King

Dennis King is our guest blogger this week. Dennis is President of American Institute of Architects, Michigan and Chairman and CEO of Harley Ellis Devereaux, an award-winning, full-service archittecture firm. Check back here each weekday to read Dennis' thoughts on National Architecture Week and how design and architecture have a profound impact on quality of life. 

Pass the Torch of Leadership

To be a community of progress, the development of next generation civic leadership is a requirement of current leadership, says United Way for Southeastern Michigan president Michael J. Brennan.

Taking It Downtown

What separates one city from the next? After decades of suburban sprawl, communities in SE Michigan are starting to realize the importance of walkable, workable and liveable downtowns.

Guest Blogger: Pavan Muzumdar

Pavan Muzumdar is our guest blogger this week. Pavan is the CEO of MV Software Company and a coach for the Great Lakes Entrepreneurs Quest business plan competition.Check back here every weekday to read Pavan's thoughts about competing in the global marketplace. 

Some Assembly Required

Come and get it! For some, the sit down family meal may sound like something out of a Norman Rockwell painting. But prepared gourmet meal services and personal chefs are turning grab-and-run meals into dinner hour adventures.

Feel Da Noise

From Parliament-Funkadelic to the Stooges to the entire stable of Motown artists to today's techno pioneers, metro Detroit isn't the next anything, it is a musical force of nature. Panelists at a recent MOCAD event waxed poetic about our region's reputation for revolutionary sound.

Guest Blogger: Jim Townsend

Jim Townsend is our guest blogger this week. He is the executive director of the Tourism Economic Development Council, serves on the Board of Directors of the Michigan Suburbs Alliance, which he founded in 2002, and lives with his family in Royal Oak. 

Check back here every weekday to read Jim's thoughts about branding our region.


The World Is Their Cubicle

Professionals across Metro Detroit are ditching their cubicles and "Office Space" culture for cafes, coffee shops and libraries. All these 21st Century professionals need is a lap top, a Wi-Fi connection and a hot cup of Joe to make their way in Michigan's new knowledge-based economy.

From Rust Belt to Green Belt

Metro Detroit has a rep for being more rusty than green around the middle, but sustainable initiatives are taking hold. The real question is not if S.E. Michigan can go green, but just how green it will go.

Architects as Urban Alchemists

Five S.E. Michigan architects discuss how the wood, steel, glass and concrete of our built environment reflect who we are, and where we are headed.

Ready for Prime Time

Detroit-based filmmakers want to get their DIY postapocalyptic sci-fi series InZer0 on a major cable network, sure, but the show's creators also hope their project will inspire and transform the local film industry.

Guest Blogger: Lou Glazer

Here's Post No. 4 from Lou Glazer, the president of Ann Arbor-based Michigan Future Inc., a think-tank that is a resource of ideas for how Michigan can and should reshape its economy. Check back daily for more of Glazer's thoughts.

Ann Arbor, Welcome Detroit

Ann Arbor needs Detroit. Detroit needs Ann Arbor. As much as these places are their own communities, they need one another more than ever.

Guest Blogger: Doug Rothwell

Metromode's guest blogger this week is Doug Rothwell, president of Detroit Renaissance. Here's what he has to say about transforming the region's economy.
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