September 27, 2017

Detroit Cultivator @ Hyperallergic

DETROIT — Design duo Akoaki, comprised of the wife and husband architecture team Anya Sirota and Jean Louis Farges, has worked closely with community members and cultural partners in Detroit’s North End neighborhood for roughly the past four years.

“We met people in the neighborhood, and we started listening to stories,” said Sirota, in an interview with Hyperallergic, “and understanding the narrative of the [North End] made it impossible not to try to figure out how to participate in recounting that story.”

Once the “north end” of Paradise Valley — a thriving entertainment district whose clubs hosted breakthrough performances by Motown singers — the neighborhood experienced a prolonged period of depopulation and entropy. Today, it is one of the many frontline areas being considered for redevelopment as the newly installed Q-Line streetcar meets the border of this area, which has been transformed over the last decade by grassroots community organizers, urban farmers, and artists.

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