As a transplant to Michigan there are some signs I've had to get used to seeing. Take the "Michigan Left" sign which instructs my very trained "No U-Turns" brain to do the exact opposite. I feel like I'm breaking the law every time I have to head east on Kilgore when getting off of 131. But there's a new sign that popped up in Detroit, recently, that has the whole city buzzing.

"Hood Closed to Gentrifiers" the metal sign proclaims, calling attention to the North End neighborhood, the people therein, and opposition to displacement. According to an article from Click on Detroit, the man behind the sign, Bryce Detroit, says the police may have taken his sign down, but he has no plans to stop his movement. In the article, he said, quote:

I would describe it as a neighborhood that is steeped in history, steeped in legacy... In particular, Black art and cultural economy...It’s my own personal policy in regards to land-use in my neighborhood.

Even though authorities have removed the sign, Bryce Detroit has support from his neighbors and his mission has only grown in popularity. It calls for the end of the systematic removal of the urban poor to make room for the wealthy elite. We've seen this happen in cities all over the country over the last several decades, most famously, perhaps, the destruction of the Cabrini-Green projects in Chicago. Developments move in to create luxury where lack once stood, million dollar condos where affordable housing once was, and forces residents who have called that area home their whole lives to pack it up and find somewhere else to live.

Bryce Detroit has no intentions of seeing his beloved North End neighborhood be dissolved in such a way, and plans to install more than 20 "Hood Closed to Gentrifiers" signs throughout the city.

UP NEXT: Michigan Signs of the Zodiac


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