Despite the valiant efforts of its burgeoning startup community, Detroit just became the largest city to ever file for bankruptcy in the U.S.
Fast Company contributor Matt Haber asked earlier this year whether creative companies would be able to rescue Detroit. We must wonder how this setback will effect the hardworking citizens of Detroit who are trying to rebuild Detroit by hand.
- Between 2000 and 2010, the population plummeted 25%. It will soon drop below 700,000 for the first time in nearly a century.
- Detroit has more than 100,000 vacant lots in its 139 square miles. A fourth of the housing units—45,000—are abandoned.
- Unemployment is 18%—more than twice the national rate. Including people no longer looking for work, the rate soars to more than 50%.
- Household income is $27,862, barely half the national level. Nearly a third live in poverty, more than double the national rate.
- In 2011, Detroit ranked first in murder rate, first in violent-crime rate, and fifth in property-crime rate.
- The police force is down by more than half from 12 years ago. The fire department was cut by a third in the past decade.
Here is some of our other coverage of Detroit:
Wow, Detroit is in a lot of trouble. Never knew a city could declare bankruptcy until today. In concept it makes sense.