Monday, November 10, 2014

Ongoing Gentrification of Detroit

I made two minor discoveries this past weekend which cause me to question what's happening in Detroit's Midtown.

One was finding that the Biggby Coffee outlet on Woodward Avenue has shut down. Unlike some other spots, the Biggby shop was not chic, overpriced, or in any way upscale-- and had a diverse, multiethnic clientele.

The second discovery was stopping into the Cass Café on Saturday night with a friend, and finding a small crowd. When I lived in the Cass Corridor in the 1990's, the Cass Café was not only the most upscale saloon in the Corridor (back then spots like the Bronx and Third Street Saloon were total dives), it was invariably packed on weekends. Or even week nights. There was always quite a diverse mix of people, ethnically, in age, and in profession-- Wayne State professors mingling with low rent characters, including a host of starving artists, musicians, and writers.

Where has everyone gone?

Presumably I walked into an anomaly-- that usually the Cass Café is packed, and I happened to hit it on an off night.

It remains a very cool place.

I'll have more observations about the local scene in upcoming days.

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