Dilapidating Ruins reminiscent of a glorious past

“And it is awful here, there is no other way to say it. But I believe that Detroit is America’s city. It was the vanguard of our way up, just as it is the vanguard of our way down. And one hopes the vanguard of our way up again.

Detroit is Pax Americana. The birthplace of mass production, the automobile, the cement road, the refrigerator, frozen peas, high- paid blue-collar jobs, home ownership and credit on a mass scale. America’s way of life was built here.”
— Charlie LeDuff

Haussmann under the commission of Napoleon had vast areas of Old Paris demolished and rebuilt with wide avenues interlinking to form a grid. Detroit, on the other hand, started with a clean slate and the city expanded with a grid and mile road system, designed for driving pleasure.

Henry Ford and the other titan’s of the early automotive industry helped create a robust economy that allowed for things to keep getting better until it made the locals complacent and outsiders curious. A cataclysm of massive proportions was impending upon Motor City.

Eventually everyone saw the headlights of the oncoming cataclysm but just as cars in Detroit don’t have front license plates, no one could identify it without the benefit of hindsight. Detroit however did not end; Detroit continues, ignominiously whimpering under the twinkle of a fading star.