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How Detroit ended up with the worst public transit. Jim Storm has an easier time than most.

How Detroit ended up with the worst public transit

In the region that gave America a set of wheels, the Ferndale resident hasn’t owned a car in years, leaving behind the perpetual repairs, insurance payments and gas pumps for the bus — and for him, at least, it works. The thought of someone actually ditching his car in metro Detroit, however, is virtually unheard of. Living within a stone’s throw of Woodward Avenue, though, it makes sense for Storm. During the week, the 43-year-old leaves his home in the morning, walks toward the Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation stop near the southwest corner of Marshall and Woodward avenues, waits for one of the numerous Woodward SMART buses — one typically arrives every 15 minutes — and rides to the Detroit Institute of Arts, where he’s worked for years as the museum’s mount designer and fabricator. Storm knows his situation is unusual. How’d it get this bad? Ask that question — why is public transportation here so unreliable?

Detroit Blight Battle To Take Down Abandoned Buildings Could Be Key To Bankrupt City's Survival. Metro Detroit's transit is designed to fail. If you live in Detroit and work in Livonia, you'd better have a car.

Metro Detroit's transit is designed to fail

Relying on a bus means long waits and long walks. The suburban bus system doesn't run at all in the job-rich western suburb because the city has opted out of public transit. Though the city bus system transports passengers to the fringes of Livonia, it doesn't touch the vast majority of the suburb's 35 square miles. Why Detroit's teachers are 'sick' of their inadequate schools. Falling ceilings, mushrooms growing from walls, Detroit Public School teach have had enough of their schools’ poor conditions.

Why Detroit's teachers are 'sick' of their inadequate schools

Despite cautioning that school system is set to run out of money in April, state-appointed emergency manager Darnell Earley has announced his resignation effective at the end of February. He exits amid chaos, and another potential teacher sick-out. Read the full transcript of the segment below: Crumbling, Destitute Schools Threaten Detroit’s Recovery. Residents wonder how the city can ever recoup its lost population and attract young families if the public schools are in abysmal shape.

Crumbling, Destitute Schools Threaten Detroit’s Recovery

“As we begin to rebuild this city and we’re seeing money and development moving in, people are understanding that there is no way we can improve Detroit without a strong educational system,” said Mary Sheffield, a native of Detroit and a City Council member. “We have businesses and restaurants and arenas, but our schools are falling apart and our children are uneducated. As Detroit breaks down, scourge of arson burns out of control. Forbes Welcome. Detroit MI Real Estate Information. Fewest cops are patrolling Detroit streets since 1920s. Detroit — There are fewer police officers patrolling the city than at any time since the 1920s, a manpower shortage that sometimes leaves precincts with only one squad car, posing what some say is a danger to cops and residents.

Fewest cops are patrolling Detroit streets since 1920s

Detroit has lost nearly half its patrol officers since 2000; ranks have shrunk by 37 percent in the past three years, as officers retired or bolted for other police departments amid the city's bankruptcy and cuts to pay and benefits. Left behind are 1,590 officers — the lowest since Detroit beefed up its police force to battle Prohibition bootleggers. "This is a crisis, and the dam is going to break," said Mark Diaz, president of the Detroit Police Officers Association.

"It's a Catch-22: I know the city is broke, but we're not going to be able to build up a tax base of residents and businesses until we can provide a safe environment for them. " Police Chief James Craig acknowledges he doesn't have as many officers as he'd like. Staffing challenges Deployment shuffle. Detroit pays high price for arson onslaught.

Detroit — Arson is a raging epidemic in Detroit, destroying neighborhoods and lives as the city tries to emerge from bankruptcy.

Detroit pays high price for arson onslaught

Even amid a historic demolition blitz, buildings burn faster than Detroit can raze them. Detroit's Disappearing Population. Crime, Not Debt, is Detroit’s Biggest Problem. A couple months ago, Governing’s cover story, “Who Will Save Detroit?

Crime, Not Debt, is Detroit’s Biggest Problem

,” focused on some of the public- and private-sector folks injecting an exciting energy into the city’s economic development and revitalization efforts. But the answer to Detroit’s problems won’t be found in new business ventures or in how the city restructures its debt, say two Detroit women with stakes in the city’s future. Rather, they say, it’s in bringing crime under control and making neighborhoods livable again.

Read the rest of this month's magazine issue. Anatomy of Detroit’s Decline - Interactive Feature. A Dream Still Deferred. Photo AT first glance, the numbers released by the Census Bureau last week showing a precipitous drop in Detroit’s population — 25 percent over the last decade — seem to bear a silver lining: most of those leaving the city are blacks headed to the suburbs, once the refuge of mid-century white flight.

A Dream Still Deferred

But a closer analysis of the data suggests that the story of housing discrimination that has dominated American urban life since the early 20th century is far from over. In the Detroit metropolitan area, blacks are moving into so-called secondhand suburbs: established communities with deteriorating housing stock that are falling out of favor with younger white homebuyers. If historical trends hold, these suburbs will likely shift from white to black — and soon look much like Detroit itself, with resegregated schools, dwindling tax bases and decaying public services. When white Detroiters could not win by fighting, they fled to the suburbs.

But those explanations were just convenient myths. Whose Neighborhood Is It? Photo On June 25, 1974, suburban residents of Detroit won their four-year battle to overturn court-ordered busing of black city students across county lines into their schools.

Whose Neighborhood Is It?

In a key 5-4 Supreme Court decision, Milliken v. Bradley, Chief Justice Warren Burger declared that 41 white suburban governments had not committed “significant violations” of the Constitution. Burger wrote: No single tradition in public education is more deeply rooted than local control over the operation of public schools; local autonomy has long been thought essential both to the maintenance of community concern and support for public schools and to quality of the educational process. The victory in Milliken was based on the assumption that African-Americans would be bused in, not that they would be living next door.

Southfield, Mich., for example, which had been 0.7 percent black in 1970, by 2010 had become 70.3 percent black, and its schools nearly 95 percent black.