Our Visit to the City Planner!

A small group of Joberts students took a field trip to our local Detroit City Planner. We had been studying industry, residential and commercial. We were fully equipped with questions to ask our guide. We couldn't wait to see the future city plans and learn all about our topics. We already had quite a knowledge of what city planners because, of a past visit with an Oakland County planner, Charlotte Buckdhart.


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First, we went through security and made it to a conference room filled with maps on easels. We all sat down on swivel chairs and listened contently while Mr. Goulock explained various maps. He described an older map from 2005, heavy industry on the river and residential areas scattered. It was a bit jumbled, a lot of land uses in various places. Next, he showed a future city map. Towards the center of the city there was high populations and residents like apartments, condos and buildings that housed many families. Heavy industries would be moved so, they weren't quite so close to waters. As you got farther from the main city, the population decreases and more single family houses are introduced. Therefore creating a more organized, well-kept city as our goal. The city plans are changed about every 2-4 years to accomodate needs. Then our guides brought out these thick, dusty, books that were filled with maps from the late 1800's and early 1900's. It was really great to see that we had sucessfully preserved our history. The maps were extremely detailed and hand drawn. The keys went all the way down to what material the buildings were made of! One of the maps we weren't allowed to touch and another was so old that it was in plastic covers to protect it.
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Then we were allowed to ask questions! A thing we were really concerned about was the environment. Where they taking precautions and best management practices when they make proposals? Do they consider the environment a big part of thier descions? Are we planning to prevent pollution and other things that threaten our environment? The answers left us pleased. It turns out they have a HUGE book of environmental rules that they need to follow with all choices they make! So, if a plan interfears with an endangered species or something of that sort, they have to find a way to work around it or ditch the idea completely. Infact, the environment is one of there main focuses. Then we started asking more questions about their job like: What does it take to make a new proposal come true? Do you enjoy working as a city planner? How do you decide what plans are best for the city?
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We finished with a round trip on the people mover. We spotted historic landmarks and enjoyed the ride. It was a fun way to end the day. By the finish of our trip, we were filled to the brim with information and new facts. We couldn't wait to share our trip!