Every five years the City of Detroit undergoes a process to update its Parks and Recreation Strategic Plan (PRSP). As part of the overall effort to analyze the PRSP, the City of Detroit conducted an in-depth analysis of unique city-owned sites along the city’s East Riverfront to understand how Detroiters use these riverfront sites now and how they envision them in the future. The study focused on four sites: Civic Center, the Aretha, the Gold Coast and the Marina District. The goal of the East Riverfront Assets Study (ERAS) was aimed to develop a collective vision and actionable plan for creating vibrant, sustainable destinations along the riverfront.

To incorporate an inclusive planning process for these important riverfront sites, the ROSSETTI Urban Planning team and The City of Detroit hosted a series of public engagement events that provided residents, park users, and community leaders a platform to review the opportunities and challenges of the sites and collectively propose ideas and recommendations to improve them in the future. Throughout the project there were three rounds of public engagement at different stages of the planning process. In total, approximately 870 community participants provided input to this plan. The team also performed an extensive analysis of the structural, civil, electrical, mechanical, and operational components.

ROSSETTI developed high-level, pragmatic concepts to align with both required infrastructure improvements and public input, as well as capitalizing on opportunities and needs in the larger network of the collection of public assets on the East Riverfront. These design concepts will be used to estimate future capital improvement projects that will require additional planning design and engineering and align with future strategies and priorities. The City of Detroit can utilize this comprehensive study and recommendations to assist in capital planning with the goal of providing quality public spaces on the Riverfront to Detroiters.

To see the full report, visit the City of Detroit Parks & Recreation website.


Detroit, Michigan




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