Detroit’s Black Bottom neighborhood receives state historical marker


Black Bottom neighborhood receives state historical marker. - ALEX WASHINGTON
  • Alex Washington
  • Black Bottom neighborhood receives state historical marker.

Detroit’s Black Bottom neighborhood was once one of the most thriving African American communities in the city, filled with a variety of Black-owned businesses including pharmacies, barbershops, diners, lawyers, nightclubs, and more, and it became home to many Southerners who migrated North for factory work.

The once-flourishing neighborhood was destroyed as a result of the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956, however — a fate that many American cities met in the ’50s and ’60s.

Now, Black Bottom has officially been cemented in history with a state historical marker located in Lafayette Central Park, 1500 E. Lafayette, Detroit. The marker tells a fragment of the neighborhood’s history and names famous Black Bottom residents like Coleman A. Young, Joe Louis, and Ralph Bunche.

The Michigan Department of Transportation announced plans to demolish I-375 to pave a new boulevard and business district, as part of a nationwide effort to rethink America’s cities.

The $330 million project will create a six-lane boulevard that will include bike lanes, pedestrian paths, and green spaces.

Stay connected with Detroit Metro Times. Subscribe to our newsletters, and follow us on Google News, Apple News, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or Reddit.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Detroit Metro Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Metro Times Press Club for as little as $5 a month.