8 Mile Boulevard Association, in partnership with the Cities of Ferndale and Detroit, hosted a digital community meeting on December 3 to present concept presentations for the 8 Mile and Woodward Improvement Project. With the feedback received, the selection committee will meet Wednesday, December 9 to finalize which firm will move forward on the project.
Residents near the 8 Mile/Woodward area have, for some time now, expressed concern and frustration about the conditions of the intersection. Teams from both cities have attempted to address these conditions, as well as the challenges faced by the individuals who rely on the intersection for shelter and/or a source of income via panhandling. These efforts have been unable to achieve more than short-term cleanups, nor have they succeeded in addressing the issues of persistent homelessness and panhandling.
A comprehensive improvement plan for a project like 8 Mile and Woodward takes extensive planning and research; while it may have seemed static, the Cities of Ferndale and Detroit have been working with partner agencies to address the intersection's challenges since 2018.
Beginning in February of 2018, the Cities of Detroit and Ferndale, along with MDOT and several nonprofit organizations (8MBA, Southwest Housing Solutions, Community Housing Network, and South Oakland Shelter), engaged in a pilot program to address concerns regarding homelessness and blight at 8 Mile and Woodward. The group engaged in concentrated efforts around cleanliness and safety, human services, and outreach and engagement. Of note:
Using what the teams have learned during our involvements since 2018, the Cities of Detroit and Ferndale are moving forward with a plan to install physical improvements at the 8 Mile and Woodward intersection, and improve health and human services outcomes for the people who reside there. The proposed activities provide an opportunity to build on past work and formally establish an artistic, lighted “front door” welcome to the Cities of Detroit and Ferndale, creating a safe and welcoming environment for pedestrians and vehicles.
This Request for Proposals (RFP) is an opportunity for any interested respondent, paired with a licensed architect, to compete for the opportunity to install improvements to the 8 Mile and Woodward intersection. Proposals are due on October 23, 2020 and submission instructions are within the document.
The preliminary budget for the project is $100,000 - this is a placeholder figure to give respondents an idea of the amount of potential resources that will be allocated to the project, helping make sure that what is designed can actually be implemented. Neither the City of Detroit nor the City of Ferndale has formally allocated funds to this project. Potential funding sources are currently being identified.
The RFP can be found here.
The City of Ferndale shares the City of Detroit's desire to improve conditions at this intersection for the benefit of all. The City of Ferndale will not allocate funds to this project unless a satisfactory project scope and RFP are issued for a complementary effort to engage and support the persons at this intersection facing chronic homelessness and other challenges. The City of Detroit is actively working with us and other partners on that complementary effort, with a goal of scheduling a community progress update in early to mid October 2020. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions and continue to check this page for updates.
For more information, please contact Ferndale Director of Community and Economic Development Jordan Twardy.