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Day 10: Dodge Fountain – Detroit, MI

In keeping with the Midwestern theme, today we visit Detroit. Yes, Detroit. Probably not a place you’d expect to be high on the walkability radar—and you’re right about that—-but there are a few things worth seeing.

Pictured here is the Dodge Fountain in Hart Plaza downtown. The angle is a bit tricky on this fountain. I didn’t have a lot of time to shoot comfortably because the people around the fountain were becoming a little too persistent in trying to get me to interact with them. I don’t like strangers to hold my cameras unless in the right situation, but I have the feeling this situation was not going to be favorable. At any rate, I still think it’s a cool photo and reminds me that even in the worst places, there are always great places to go.

The Detroit Riverfront is quite beautiful, situated on the Detroit River, just across from Windsor, Ontario. It looks like they’ve added even more attractions since I was last there in 2003. I know there’s been a lot of revitalization and lofts constructed near Comerica Park as well.

While Detroit had many beautiful buildings and monuments to see, there is one very sad fact that I have to point out. The day I was there, a beautiful Saturday fall afternoon, there were no people. At least not the amount of people I would expect to see in a downtown. It’s really uncomfortable to be in a place with huge buildings and no people. The only place I saw people was the MGM Grand Casino, and so I went there. I don’t enjoy gambling that much, but I think I did win $10 throwing some change in the slots.

I went to visit someone the next day who lives about an hour outside of Detroit. I told him that I went walking around downtown taking photos by myself the previous day. He was shocked. “I can’t believe you went walking around there by yourself. You’re very lucky you didn’t get shot or killed,” he said. He reminds me of this every time I see him. My rebuttal: “Well, there was no one even there to shoot me.” So, there you have it. I really didn’t feel that uncomfortable and would likely walk around for photos again. I’m probably a little more adventurous than most people, though. I enjoyed my day there. I would suggest doing a little research beforehand to find out just how dangerous it really is.

You can see my photos of Detroit here. You may be pleasantly surprised.

This article is a part of the Exploring the Walkability of America in 30 Days photo series.

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