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« Detroit News Roundup for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, August 31-September 2, 2007
» Fusia, Kawaiian Cafe, and the Marketplace at Asian Village, Downtown Detroit

Detroit News Roundup for Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday September 3-5, 2007

Great Lakes Entrepreneur’s Quest Launches Business Plan Competition for Michigan’s Technology Entrepreneurs

The Great Lakes Entrepreneur’s Quest (GLEQ) has launched the 8th year of its business plan competition and training program for entrepreneurs statewide. The GLEQ provides Michigan’s technology entrepreneurs training, coaching and investor feedback as part of its two-phase business plan competition.

The training is specifically designed for technology or life sciences entrepreneurs needing assistance in the development of all aspects of their business plan. Ann Arbor SPARK will sponsor one offering at its facility in Ann Arbor starting on September 27th and Automation Alley and TechTown will sponsor a second offering alternating between their respective sites in Troy and Detroit starting October 3.

[via PR Newswire (press release)]

Madison Heights supports Detroit in insurance reform

MADISON HEIGHTS — City Council earlier this week voted to support a Detroit-born effort that would force automobile and home insurers to end the practice of using residency as a primary means of determining insurance premiums.

City Council adopted a resolution in support of a rally for two bills introduced by state Sen. Martha G. Scott, D-Detroit, that would require a large-scale reform of the way in which insurers charge their customers.

“Michigan auto insurance really needs some reform,” said Green.

What insurance companies are doing right now to Detroit is unfair and unethical, a form of price gouging rather than making prices reflect a driver’s real risks. The insurance companies get away with it and I’m sure class and even race has something to do with it because folks in Oakland County aren’t affected. It’s good to see one of the suburbs joining with Detroit on this issue.
[via C Newspapers]

State fairgrounds could benefit from fuller calendar

The Michigan State Fair just wrapped up its annual 13-day run in Detroit, with officials predicting that the event drew a total of about 240,000 visitors.

While that is a respectable attendance figure and similar to last year’s, officials are looking at ways to put the 160-acre fairgrounds site to better use throughout the year, not just for two weeks in the summer. Currently, the only upcoming event listed online for the fairgrounds is a wrestling show scheduled Sept. 14.

Filling up the fairgrounds’ calendar throughout the year would help enhance the Michigan State Fair and put it on stronger financial ground.

[via Battle Creek Enquirer]

Motor City cribs

Detroit Euro-tripping, soul-shivering Amp Fiddler has been calling his house in Conant Gardens home for nearly 25 years. The one-time George Clinton keyboardist has seen everyone from a young Dilla and Slum Village to Public Enemy’s Chuck D to Proof to Clinton pass through his own studio through the years.

Amp shares his house with his brother Bubz and his 16-year-old son Dorian. “I love Detroit,” the chick magnet says. “The property’s cheap and I can jam as loud as I want. It was and still is a good musical neighborhood to set up camp.”

[via Detroit Metro Times]

It’s a Family Affair

At its best, Detroit dance music simplifies and purifies as it, at the same time, blazes new trails in pop culture history. We can take it all the way back to the ’30s, ’40s and ’50s, when big band jazz, swing and jump blues bands ruled clubs in the city’s long-gone Black Bottom and Paradise Valley neighborhoods. Motown then filled dance floors around the world with the tracks of our tears in the ’60s and early ’70s. Then it got stranger. Try this on for size: a mutant blend of punk, disco (from this country), electronically processed beats (from the UK and Germany) was recombined with local strains of raw black power from the Parliament-Funkadelic camp to forge newer, much sicker inspirations. Add seasoning and sweat from House DJ pioneer Frankie Knuckles and Chicago’s famed Warehouse Club and … voila! Detroit Techno was born! And it’s been building, crashing and rebuilding its crazy sonic platform from about 1981 to the ever-growing, pulsating now, man.

How simple and pure is the music? So simple that you can drag a P.A. onto the street, turn it on and get dancers corkscrewing and shuffling to 140 BPMs in no time. And so pure, in fact, that you’ll see mothers hopping around with their babies to the 4/4 beats. And yet it’s all still strange and getting stranger, you say? Oh, yes. All of that should be apparent at the Urban Electronic Stage during this Saturday’s (Sept. 8) Dally in the Alley … although the dance stage is actually located on Second Avenue, appropriately situated at the outer limits of the festival.

[via Detroit Metro Times]

American Le Mans Series Raves About Belle Isle

The American Le Mans Series’ first visit to Detroit and Belle Isle Park was without a doubt a success. All weekend long, Series drivers, officials, teams and manufacturers heaped praise on the venue and Roger Penske’s effort to bring major auto racing back to Detroit. The Series made such an impact that event organizers announced its return in 2008 as part of the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix weekend. Here is just a small sampling of the reaction to racing in Detroit:

Scott Atherton, American Le Mans Series President and CEO
“The entire Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix is an event that meets the profile World Class. I was here in January and had been able to see the venue two or three times in the meantime. The progress and transformation of the area was remarkable. All credit goes to Roger, Bud Denker and their team. The real winner during the weekend was the city of Detroit.”

[via PaddockTalk]

Detroit awards $2.8 million contract for the Dequindre Cut project

DETROIT — With the RiverWalk along the Detroit River a rousing success, the city is moving ahead with plans to connect the walkway with a biking and hiking trail to Eastern Market.

The Detroit Economic Growth Corp. awarded a $2.8 million contract today to ABC Paving Co. in Trenton to construct the Dequindre Cut, a 1-mile path on an old railroad bed between the market and the river. The project is expected to start in two weeks, with completion by May 31, 2008.

The project will be funded by grants, with one from the state of Michigan.

[via DetNews.com]

Superintendent: More students than expected enrolled in Detroit

DETROIT — Detroit Public Schools has made gains in stemming the tide of students leaving the district, Superintendent Connie Calloway said this morning during a tour of Western International High School.

Calloway said the district is starting the school year with about 115,000 students — down from about 116,000 recorded during the last student count.

Calloway, who has been on the job for about two months, said the district must have at least 100,000 students to prevent more charter schools from opening in Detroit. Charters get funding like traditional schools, but operate outside the jurisdiction of local school boards.

[via DetNews.com]

Detroit Grand Prix a Japanese affair

The Detroit Grand Prix, held over the Labor Day weekend on Belle Isle, appeared to get generally good reviews.

The race ended in dramatic fashion with an accident taking out the top three cars on the last lap.

[via MLive.com]

Iraqi family among lucky few to start new life in US

DETROIT, United States (AFP) — For the first time since she fled Iraq 15 years ago, Wahida Nissan’s house is full of family.

After years of speaking only by phone, and seeing her nieces and nephews only in photographs, Wahida can now look her brothers in the eyes. And they are all smiling.

[via AFP]

Rails-to-trails project will link Eastern Market, RiverWalk

One of Detroit’s next major projects took a big step forward Tuesday.

Michael Dempsey, project manager for the Detroit Economic Growth Corp., said construction should begin in about one month, with a completion date of May 31.

Same as above. Although this is a rails to trails conversion there is no worry of needing to one day convert this back into a rail in the future. The path no longer goes all the way downtown anyways and any form of rail transit that is built in the city going north should be on Woodward Avenue.
[via Detroit Free Press]

8 Mile Opportunity

Eight Mile Road is both famous and infamous. Long the symbol of divisiveness, the busy thoroughfare has been seen as haven for crime and a resting place for derelict buildings.

The regions economic malaise hasnt helped a bit, with small businesses struggling and cities grappling with ways to continue providing adequate levels of services in the face of shrinking revenues. But Eight Mile also represents 27 miles of prime real estate, and lately the roadway has been attracting more attention for its opportunities than its liabilities to the cities that it borders.

[via Model D]

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« Detroit News Roundup for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, August 31-September 2, 2007
» Fusia, Kawaiian Cafe, and the Marketplace at Asian Village, Downtown Detroit