Ford recently opened its new Information Center at the Factory in the Corktown neighborhood. It features a vast array of Ford’s contributions to the culture of Detroit, as well as updates on new efforts for the new Corktown Campus.
The goal of its opening was to engage with the community around the new campus. People here have ways to vocalize concerns and stay up-to-date on construction. The information center will have a limited life span, so Ford committed to offer the space for local artists to showcase work in the neighborhood.
Ford’s recent purchase of Michigan Central Station will be the locale for its new innovation huband a major company push to move closer to its mobility mission. Inside a renovated interior, the company is focused on establishing the innovations behind its fleet of autonomous vehicles by 2021.
The company is also looking to bring the best of Silicon Valley’s progressive work environments to the forefront of Detroit’s redeveloped identity. The hope is to revitalize Detroit’s creative potential with the help of Ford’s vision.
Throughout the construction process, workers have been finding artifacts from when the train station was first built. Old train tickets, elevator buttons, and drink bottles. These objects have helped bring the information center alive with the train stations 106–year history.
It was announced last year that the planned Corktown campus will cost $740 million, with about $250 million in potential tax incentives to offset the price tag. Ford is working with organizations to develop a community benefits agreement.
Part of this agreement that’s now coming to fruition is a $250,000 grant to four community organizations throughout Corktown. Ford announced that it was for organizations “that celebrate the area’s history and culture.”
Hoping to address mobility issues for Detroiters, Ford Mobility has also begun crowdsourcing the most pressing difficulties in travel throughout the city. The City:One Challenge invites Detroiters to submit their ideas for a solution to some of the mobility difficulties for Detroiters.
One of the key issues addressed is the difficulty in moving amongst the neighborhoods. A personliving near North End without a car can find it close to impossible to get to a hospital when there’s little time.
Other issues involve the traffic conditions in downtown, reducing traffic safety incidents, and electric vehicle infrastructure. And of course, nobody forget to mention the dwindling number of available parking spots.
The new Ford Information Center will be open from 4-7pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and noon-4pm on Saturdays.