For the past decades Detroit has been synonymous for urban decay, while today its apocalyptic landscape poses a challenge for professionals and investors claiming to provide a vision for its future. This study aims to understand the complex dynamics that led to the abandonment of the city and invalidated the attempts to reverse the decline started in the sixties. Among them, “Doxiadis Plan” stands out for having presented a long-term vision based on a set of integrated programs and following “scientific” guidelines. The study carries out a comprehensive analysis of Detroit’s structural problems highlighting their interactions that formed a downward spiral leading the city to decline. Moreover, It examines the “Doxiadis Plan” in its historical context and draws parallels with contemporary initiatives, in order to explain its failure while reviewing its optimistic vision towards the new promises. Envisioning Detroit’s post-industrial future one should integrate its past.
Keywords: urban decline, urban sprawl, racial conflicts, Ecumenopolis – Megalópolis
V Seminario Internacional de Investigación en Urbanismo, 13 y 14 de junio en Barcelona