Improvement of John R Corridor In Hazel Park

Community: City of Hazel Park
Population: 10,000+

pftIn the last two years, based on the streamlining of the business process, the City of Hazel Park has attracted unique businesses to the City of Hazel Park such as the 1) award winning new restaurant Mabel Gray, owned and run by one of the best chefs in the country, James Rigato and 2) the award winning microbrewery/meadery, Cellarmen’s; and 3) new art studios. In addition, through the MML, the Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) came to Hazel Park and conducted a 3 day public charrette to provide a future concepts and a plan for the John R corridor. The economic development actions and the vision provided by our residents and CNU will provide a basis for excellent placemaking that will attract people throughout the region to the City of Hazel Park.


The first and easiest way to replicate this success is to streamline the business process. We attracted businesses by giving them a easy, consistent, predictable route to open a business in Hazel Park. In addition, the city sold the assets, the current buildings and infrastructure available, and the people of Hazel Park.

Creativity and Originality:

The project's creativity and originality stems from the city allowing these businesses to be creative and implement their visions with the Hazel Park's support. These new entreprenuers had a vision and the city instead of totally dictating a vision allowed these people to retrofit obsolete buildings and turn them into community assets. Further, the CNU Legacy Project allowed the residents, a local planning firm and a national planning firm create an original shared vision for John R that required a unique type of cooperation. To see the vision, please visit the following site:

Community Impact:

It has improved the public image of the community. Due to Mabel Gray and CNU, the city has received more positive press than any time in recent memory. Further, it has brought a positive image to the city's business community and brought people into the community that have never visited Hazel Park. Lastly, the community is believing they deserve better and a better quality of life.

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Project Multimedia:

JohnR.CNU.visionMabel Gray237am Art Studio