Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Detroit on My Mind

I first went to Detroit on a college debate team road trip in 1997. I was able realize my dream of going to see one of the old rest belt cities on its death bed. It was my first attempt at anthropological and urban planning tourism, not only seeing the downtown and touristy areas, but inhabiting the neighborhoods, being with residents and living as a true inhabitant would, feeling how the built environment affects locals.

I have an unhealthy attraction to order and disorder. There is beauty in order and poetry in chaos. I especially love the chaos of Detroit and its ruins. From 2 million inhabitants to less than 900,000 the city is now post apocolyptic. Detroit, today, perfectly inhabits the following writing by an unknown poet:

The Splendor of the Ruin

Ruins are a testament to human pride, the fragility of existence and the finite nature of the world.

1 comment:

Kelley said...

BTW Bill, my friend & I went to the Museum of Contemp Photography last weekend and they had an INCredible collection of photos of the abandoned Detroit train stations. I got really excited for your boys Detroit trip.