We're still two years away and people already want an extension, apparently. This is great press for those who want regional transit. When Duggan is reelected and M1 is up and running and spurring the next level of midtown and downtown investment, it will be politically feasible to put together funding for an Oakland county extension, being it streetcar or the current BRT plan. Oh, and that will be the year after the anticipated RTA millage vote. Mark your calendars for 2016-2017.
Yesterday myself and Django were on Concord Street on the eastern side of the Packard Plant for some photography of the building's exterior.
There is 24/7 security on-site now, but only one guard at any given time. The guard is friendly enough, un-armed and keeps a close eye on things. He won't allow access to the inside of the plant (stick to the main streets) and says he phones the Sheriff if anyone is found inside.
Anyway, I was shooting some pix on Concord while Django sat in his pick-up truck. The next thing I hear is Django saying "Get in the car!". I looked around and saw some youths in hoodies walking towards me. (Hoodies in summertime?)
I picked up my camera bag, walked over to the pick-up and threw the bag into the back of the truck. Then I went back for my tripod. As I walked towards the car with it, I noticed one youth running straight towards me. I threw the tripod into the truck and dived into the back of the truck, lying on top of my equipment.
By this stage the youth had reached the truck and was holding what appeared to be a Glock pistol. He was standing at the passenger window and yelled "Give it up!".
Django was in the driver's seat unaware that the kid had a gun. I could see it plainly. The next thing I heard was the screech of our tires on the road and we got out of there.
As the car edged forward, the youth was now beside the flatbed, with me lying in it. I could've easily been shot. Luckily the youth didn't fire, or maybe he only had a replica or unloaded pistol.
I asked Django whether we should report the matter to Police. He seemed to think there was little point, but we saw the Packard security guard driving by and pulled up beside him. He phoned police and three or four squad cars arrived in quick time.
We did our best to give a description of the thugs. The police went cruising around to look for them but I don't know what they found, if anything.
According to the police no crime was committed because the thieves got nothing from me and "seeing someone with a gun" is not a crime.
We made it out safely, but a guy brandishing a pistol within inches of us is "not a crime"?
Pingree was obviously the best. After that it isn't a particularly strong field--Frank Murphy was a distinguished person, but he was only mayor for four years at a time when Detroit was in terrible shape. He did do what he could, and should get credit for that. Young was notable for his longevity (too long), his wit, and his status as the first black mayor, but in my opinion he did a terrible job of managing the city, above and beyond the ongoing decay during his tenure for which he wasn't primarily responsible. If he is fourth-best, it is a not a very positive commentary on Detroit's electorate over the past few hundred years. My guess is that there is some recency bias here--Young was better than Kilpatrick or Bing, and I think somehow Archer was too bland to stick in people's minds.
Let's hope Duggan can climb up the rankings over the next few years. The city could use a top-flight mayor for a while.
Visiting Detroit late August. Want to have Sunday Breakfast/Brunch in Detroit, what would you recommend?
Prefer the midtown or central location. Maybe a central suburb like Ferndale, but must be accessible from westside and eastside because people live on both sides of city.
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