On the surface, Detroit, Michigan is a perfect location to host the 2018 ITS America Annual Meeting, in recognition of our automotive heritage and leadership in developing the technologies that define America’s transportation future. What lies beneath the surface is a regional bond dedicated to reshaping a great American city. That is the Detroit I am so anxious for every participant to see - something we like to refer to as the “Spirit of Detroit.”
Over a half-century ago, Detroit was one of the wealthiest cities in the United States. Buoyed by our automotive industry and strong manufacturing-based economy, the Motor City was cosmopolitan, a place where families came to establish roots, where entrepreneurs came to seek their fortune, and artists to showcase their talents. That vibrancy was reflected in the Spirit of Detroit statue that was dedicated in 1958. The bronze figure was the work of renowned sculpture Marshall Fredericks and stands today on Woodward Avenue as a symbol of our character.
Much has changed in the world over that time but, close to home, one constant remains; the pride of our residents. You see it in the faces and hear it in the voices of Metro Detroiters as we talk of our community. As someone who was born and raised here, I can assure you the experience of attending this Annual Meeting will leave you with lasting impressions of the grandeur of Detroit.
Certainly you have heard stories about the economic struggles of Detroit and we, as a community, are working diligently to position ourselves for a prosperous future. And the recovery is well on its way. This community certainly owes a great deal to ITS America for choosing the Motor City. I have no doubt that their decision will be rewarded. Simply put, that’s the “Spirit of Detroit.”
Rob Morosi is a Communications Specialist for the Michigan Department of Transportation and the chairperson for the 2018 Annual Meeting Communications Committee