Published: 2017

/ Student Work

Detroit’s Lower Cass and Brush Park Neighborhoods


In the fall of 2017, the Little Caesar’s Arena, new home to Detroit’s professional ice hockey and  basketball teams will open. The arena is planned to anchor a 50-block “catalytic entertainment district.” This new development, which will include housing and retail amenities, is surrounded by important Detroit landmarks including the Masonic Temple, Cass Park, Cass Tech High School and other historic properties dating back to the early 20th century. The area is also home to a variety of social services agencies dedicated to providing drug and alcohol recovery services as well as housing to the city’s homeless population.

The capstone team assisted a larger community needs assessment effort, led by Detroit-based JFM Consulting, Inc., by completing a preliminary needs assessment report to help guide the development and support of programs, initiatives and efforts to benefit the area’s incumbent population. The preliminary assessment includes analyses of area property and demographic data, area businesses and employment, sidewalk and building use conditions, traffic and parking. Students helped to design, administer and analyze a 31-question stakeholder survey of current and future community needs.


Aayat Ali, Michael Auerbach, Bader Bajaber, Xiaoya Chen, Xiaoran Dang, Sonja Karnovsky, Andrew McIntyre, Bithia Ratnasamy, Jermain Ruffin, Liang Yue, Manjun Zang


Eric Dueweke and Harley Etienne


Community Partners: JFM Consulting, Data Driven Detroit, and Catalytic Area Neighborhood Advisory Committee
Location: Detroit
Pages: 157
Topics: Housing, Community, and Economic Development, Homelessness, Catalytic Development