News of the Rust Belt from around the world, brought to you weekly by the staff of Belt Magazine. We’re independently owned; become a member and support us (plus get cool stuff for free!).
Michigan City Of Hamtramck, Once 90 Percent Polish, Is First Muslim-Majority City In U.S. [New York Daily News]
The Michigan city of Hamtramck has McDonald’s, apple pie and beer — and happens to be the first Muslim-majority city in the U.S. Once 90 percent Polish, the city of 22,000 now has a Muslim majority in the six-person City Council as well, the Washington Post reported.
A Small But Growing Number Are Finding Success Growing Crops Within The City [The Columbus Dispatch]
The city has only 15 or so commercial farms — which, unlike the roughly 250 community gardens, operate as full-fledged businesses. That’s a far cry from Rust Belt cities such as Cleveland and Detroit, which have dozens of urban farms, but the number is growing.
Chicago Housing Prices Lagging Other Cities [Chicago Magazine]
Since 2013, when local prices climbed 11.3 percent, Chicago’s prices have flattened, and over the last few months in particular, gains have trailed broader index.
Made In Detroit: What It Means To Shop In America’s Underdog City [Racked]
Detroit is a city exploring a number of retail models. There are 100-year-old family shops. There are established brands opening flagship stores. There are ephemeral pop-ups for new businesses. Some shops just hope to sell you a coat or a purse made out of seat belts, while others want to sell community along with a lot of expensive watches. There are shops that are here forever, and shops with the (planned, intentional) lifespan of a mayfly.
Steel Days: On A Modest Resurgence In Bethlehem [Pacific Standard]
Steel is still an important American industry, employing 160,000 workers nationwide, but I get the impression some steel companies have lower expectations these days and would be satisfied with profitability and relevance — they no longer expect the dominance once embodied by Bethlehem and its chief rival, U.S. Steel.
A Chill Grips A Michigan Haven For Syrian Families [New York Times]
Since the terrorist attacks in Paris, a tide of anti-refugee, anti-Muslim sentiment has swept, angrily and inexorably, across the United States. Now Mr. Mughrbel and Ms. Hammadeh say Michigan is not as welcoming a place as it was before.
Less Rust Belt, More Patina [The Architect’s Newspaper]
This October saw the opening of a new 50,000-square-foot wing to the Columbus Museum of Art, part of a multi-stage master plan conceived by Tod Williams Billie Tsein Architects and Michael Bongiorno, principal of Columbus-based DesignGroup. Until this point, the museum has not been able to host many of the larger traveling exhibitions or even display big portions of its own collection.
Video Premiere: Sex Tide – “Are You Even Alive” [CMJ]
“The unforgiving winter, mental illness and substance abuse are sufficient conditions for the creation of great art. Also, Ohio has a very deep bench when it comes to rock ‘n’ roll. No dilettantes need apply, please. Rust Belt or GTFO!”
Banner photo of Yemeni mural on the side of the Sheeba Restaurant in Hamtramck, MI, via Wikipedia
Belt is a reader-supported publication — become a member, renew your membership, or purchase a book from our store.