Enter: A New Wave of Detroit Tech & Tourism
Here’s the reality: when many people think of Detroit, they think of a city in a past tense. The city that was the nation’s manufacturing hub. The city that did invent the automobile. It’s true that Detroit has a rich history. But here’s a competing, equally true reality: Detroit is a city in a future tense.
In recent years, Detroit has quietly, but persistently, carved out a new path for itself as center for technology. It has attracted tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon, while incubating start-ups with the backing of investors like Dan Gilbert, Founder and Chairman of Quicken Loans. As a result, a host of new businesses, including high-speed internet provider Rocket Fiber and augmented reality and virtual reality solutions company, Marxent Labs, have taken root in the downtown business district.
The ground that Detroit has gained in the technology arena isn’t self-proclaimed; it’s genuine. Between 2015 and 2016 alone, the city saw a 26% increase in high-tech job growth, and its commitment to supporting new businesses – through efforts like the Quicken Loans Demo Day, which lets businesses compete for one million dollars in capital loans – has laid a solid foundation for continued growth.
The acceleration of Detroit business has also created opportunities for new audiences to enjoy sites that have long contributed to the character of the city. Detroit’s outdoor communal space at Campus Martius Park, its thriving Eastern Market, growing retail scene in Midtown, and performance venues like the Fox Theatre give both working professionals and day trippers opportunities for a mix of history and entertainment.
Detroit is also drawing crowds to its:
Greektown – An entertainment haven where authentic Greek dining options abound
Corktown – Detroit’s oldest surviving neighborhood is the perfect spot for casual eats and pub drinks
Riverfront – Just past the iconic Spirit of Detroit begins a scenic walkway along the Detroit River
Detroit Institute of Arts – Home to more than 100,000 galleries with both ancient and contemporary works
Motown Museum – Nicknamed “Hitsville USA”, where it all began for Barry Gordy and the groundbreaking sounds of Motown music
Comerica Park/Ford Field – The homes of Detroit’s professional baseball and football
The innovation and rebirth brewing in Detroit makes the city an ideal backdrop for SHIFT Tech Summit, the home furnishings technology conference Reverie and Amber Engine, a Detroit-based software provider, will host at the end of June 2017. SHIFT’s mission is to inspire innovation in the home furnishings industry through conversations and collaboration with technology leaders in adjacent industries. What better place to shape the future of a historic industry than a city that embraces the convergence of both past and future?
Rachel Giza is a Communications Specialist at Amber Engine, a Detroit-based software provider. Rachel previously served as a content strategist at iCIMS, an HR software company, and as a content writer at WebiMax, a digital marketing agency specializing in SEO. Rachel currently supports Amber Engine’s marketing efforts through content creation and content strategy.