“On the Ground” Series Examines Detroit’s North End Neighborhood

Model D’s Imani Mixon has been embedded in the North End community for the past several months.

Many of Detroit’s neighborhoods are changing and many communities are working to deal with that change.  One place where that is happening is the North End, a neighborhood near Woodward just north of Grand Boulevard.

Journalist Imani Mixon has been embedded in the community for the past several months as part of Model D’s “On the Ground” series. 

Mixon is a writer who grew up in Detroit.  She says she’s, “excited to write in the city for the city.” 

Mixon grew up near Jefferson and Dickerson on the city’s east side, before going away to study journalism at Northwestern University.  But she says Chicago didn’t have a hold on her.

Mixon says, “I kind of just looked at the pieces and realized that Detroit would be a much better place to figure things out.”

So, she returned to Detroit and found a job with Model D – the online publication reporting on neighborhoods around the region.  Mixon was embedded in the North End neighborhood as part of a reporting project called “On the Ground.”  It’s where she’s worked for the past few months writing a story each week.

Mixon says the goal of the project in the North End neighborhood is to, “acknowledge that development is coming, and that change is happening and not shy away from that fact.

She says the key is to, “get into the neighborhoods right as big change is happening, right before the big turn, to figure out about the people who have been there, about the community that has been established and to figure out what they want.”

The North End neighborhood is starting to feel the effects of the Q-Line, which runs down Woodward Avenue.  The community is sandwiched between the New Center Area to the south and the Boston-Edison district to the north.

Mixon says, “It’s a melting pot.  People are working on tech.  People are working on art.  People are working on community development, so it’s like a microcosm of all the bigger discussions we’re having in this city.”

WDET and Model D will work together over the next several months to tell more neighborhood stories as part of the “On the Ground” series.

To see a video about how North End residents envision the future of their neighborhood, click here.


  • Jerome Vaughn
    Jerome Vaughn is News Director at 101.9 WDET. His interest in news reporting began when he was five years old, after his mom bought him a yellow Panasonic ball and chain radio.