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  #61  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2013, 4:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uaarkson View Post
Oh boy. It's the Buckhead vs. Troy thread all over again.
LOL! I can see the analogy, uaarkson.

Anyone that would claim Big Beaver Rd. near Somerset is exactly the same as the high rise canyon of Peachtree near Lenox is clearly not very well informed, or just incapable of ever being wrong.
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  #62  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2013, 4:23 AM
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Originally Posted by mhays View Post
But Detroit seems to have the opposite problem...land is plentiful and apparently cheap, or generally has been. That's how office buildings have large setbacks and surface parking for example.
That's because there was so much open farmland ready for development. You'll still find that in a few places such as northern Macomb County, though many of those townships have been attempting to protect the farmland from development. Otherwise, for the most part the Tri-County area is done generating massive sprawlburbs. The few rural townships on the perimeter are zoned for large-lot residential and limited commercial/industry and most have no ambitions of becoming the next edge city. Washtenaw County is really the only other option, and like northern Macomb, most of the rural townships have made great efforts to protect their farmland. Superior TWP, which would otherwise be on its way to the next 90,000+ sprawlburb remains largely undeveloped because township leaders want it that way. Urban development is limited to the area south of Geddes Rd.
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  #63  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2013, 4:50 AM
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Ahem Gentlemen!

Getting back to the article that started this thread, does anyone seriously believe that this project - as far fetched as it is - will give Southfield an after-work downtown vibe and nightlife?

Count me as a no. If yes, pray tell, what would be the profile of the project's typical customer (income, age, spending patterns), from where geographically would he or she come, and what retail/restaurant/office tenants are likely to occupy the space - type of company, class of retail, high/low/chain/fast food restaurant?
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  #64  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2013, 5:07 AM
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I don't have faith in the project. I think they face some big challenges. The development seems prototypical and challenged cities require specialized development solutions
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  #65  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2013, 5:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
Ahem Gentlemen!

Getting back to the article that started this thread, does anyone seriously believe that this project - as far fetched as it is - will give Southfield an after-work downtown vibe and nightlife?

Count me as a no. If yes, pray tell, what would be the profile of the project's typical customer (income, age, spending patterns), from where geographically would he or she come, and what retail/restaurant/office tenants are likely to occupy the space - type of company, class of retail, high/low/chain/fast food restaurant?
I think the project misses the central points on what draws people to what they're trying to achieve.
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  #66  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2013, 2:05 PM
hudkina hudkina is offline
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I think the renderings are showing something a bit more ambitious than what the city ultimately hopes to do with the area. I think they'd be happy with a Partridge Creek or Village of Rochester Hills.

Quote:
what would be the profile of the project's typical customer (income, age, spending patterns)
Well, if you take the area bounded by Inkster, 14 Mile, Woodward, and 10 Mile, you'll find some 42,000+ households. 41% of those households (including non-family) have incomes above $75,000 a year. I think there are plenty of retailers that would be happy with that number.
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  #67  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2013, 12:35 AM
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Originally Posted by hudkina View Post
Well, if you take the area bounded by Inkster, 14 Mile, Woodward, and 10 Mile, you'll find some 42,000+ households. 41% of those households (including non-family) have incomes above $75,000 a year. I think there are plenty of retailers that would be happy with that number.
But a large chunk of that area (especially those near 14 mile and Woodward) are closer to Somerset and much closer to downtown Birmingham. And those living in northern Franklin/NW Southfield would probably be closer to stores in West Bloomfield.

Both the Village of Rochester Hills and Partridge Creek have higher end stores (although nothing like Somerset) than anything that can be supported at that location in Southfield. And I don't understand why you have so much hope for that project. The retail and restaurant scene in Southfield south of 696 (and in some parts north as well) has clearly been declining for more than 20 years. Soon to be dead Northland Mall is only three miles away and closed Tel-Twelve was closer.
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  #68  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2013, 4:13 AM
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does modern Bellevue even have anything to do with that little main street?

Maybe it was just where the young town decided to focus its development effort?
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  #69  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2013, 4:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
But a large chunk of that area (especially those near 14 mile and Woodward) are closer to Somerset and much closer to downtown Birmingham. And those living in northern Franklin/NW Southfield would probably be closer to stores in West Bloomfield.
You only get closer to Somerset when you get north of 13 Mile and east of Southfield. Everything else is closer to this site.

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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
Both the Village of Rochester Hills and Partridge Creek have higher end stores (although nothing like Somerset) than anything that can be supported at that location in Southfield.
Yes, despite the fact that this site is surrounded by 18,000 households with incomes of more than $75,000 and a median income somewhere in the $60,000 range. Just because you currently won't find higher end stores, doesn't mean they can't be viable.

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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
And I don't understand why you have so much hope for that project. The retail and restaurant scene in Southfield south of 696 (and in some parts north as well) has clearly been declining for more than 20 years.
As I stated above, I don't think this plan will follow through. I'm merely arguing that #1: the "decline" of Southfield (particularly the areas surrounding this site) is overstated, and that #2: the area has enough high end wealth to support a mid-luxury retail center on this site.

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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
Soon to be dead Northland Mall is only three miles away and closed Tel-Twelve was closer.
The Northland area is irrelevant. Northland is geared towards the lower end of the scale and caters mostly to Detroit residents. Also, you failed to mention that Tel-Twelve like many malls was converted into a (successful) power center. It is anchored by a Meijer, Lowe's and Best Buy as well as Office Depot, Pier 1, Michael's, DSW, PetSmart, etc.

I honestly don't think you have been through Southfield much aside from maybe the Northland area. That and the 8 Mile corridor are really the only truly depressed areas within the city. Everything else is fairly typical suburban. National retailers (who I'm sure are well versed on demographics) clearly have no problem opening in the city.
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  #70  
Old Posted Nov 10, 2013, 6:36 PM
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^ I guess that we'll have to agree to disagree.

The Northland area is far from irrelevant. Until 25 years ago or so, it was one of the region's premiere shopping areas and I still believe it has on of the regions self-designated flagship Macy's stores. I'm simply arguing that Northland represents the unabated trend of Southfield for the last fifteen years - retail quality and quantify decline. Moreover, the stores that replaced Tel-Twelve are solidly mid to low-middle class. With the exception of Meijer replacing a KMart the current incarnation represents a decline of what was there before.

And don't presume to know what I know about Southfield. I'm there often as I have several relatives and friends that live there - I'm betting more than you have. A few relatives live within walking (haha) distance of where this proposal would go. Maybe those who I know that live in Southfield has clouded my judgement, but to me it's clear that Southfield is suffering a serious decline. Detroit in 1975 still looked pretty good, had solidly middle class incomes, and there were still major retailers downtown and in the neighborhoods, but there were clearly serious issues. There is a reason many long-time Southfield residents have moved and many would-be residents of Southfield 20 years ago have skipped it for Farmington Hills and West Bloomfield.
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  #71  
Old Posted Nov 10, 2013, 8:36 PM
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Southfield lost 8.4% of its population between the 2000 and 2010 censuses:

2000 - 78,322
2010 - 71,758
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2014: the United States Supreme Court Imposes Corporate Sharia
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  #72  
Old Posted Nov 11, 2013, 2:16 AM
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So did virtually every other inner-ring suburb. My city has been losing population since the 1970's, but it's still a solidly middle-class city. Once a city builds out (and Southfield is built-out) the population tends to age. A home that once housed mom, dad and four kids, now houses just mom and dad. (or maybe just mom).

Southfield was actually one of the few inner-ring cities that continued to grow in population in the post 70's era. And despite the decline in population over the decade, the Census Bureau has the population of the city on an increase again. So...

And honestly, why are you such a hater?
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  #73  
Old Posted Nov 11, 2013, 2:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
The Northland area is far from irrelevant. Until 25 years ago or so, it was one of the region's premiere shopping areas and I still believe it has on of the regions self-designated flagship Macy's stores.
Uh... 25 years ago is irrelevant. And the state of Northland has little to do with the success of retail in the northern half of the city. It's irrelevant in regards to any discussion of the middle-class neighborhoods/shopping centers north of 10 Mile Rd.

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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
I'm simply arguing that Northland represents the unabated trend of Southfield for the last fifteen years - retail quality and quantify decline.
But you are wrong on that account. Northland has certainly declined as it was always geared toward Detroit and its residents. However, Meijer, Best Buy, Target, Lowe's, Kroger, The Home Depot, Starbucks, etc. These are all major retail giants that were perfectly fine with opening locations within the city. Even Walmart wants to tear down the old St. Bede's church and build a supercenter. And there are plenty of smaller national retailers that have opened shop as well. Honestly, Southfield never had a major retail presence as it was more heavily geared toward office development, but there are still plenty of retail options.


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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
Moreover, the stores that replaced Tel-Twelve are solidly mid to low-middle class. With the exception of Meijer replacing a KMart the current incarnation represents a decline of what was there before.
I don't know what fantasy world you live in, but none of those brands are low-class. They certainly aren't Pottery Barn or Nordstrom, but come on; every middle-class city has these types of shopping centers. If you think that power center is low-end, then 90% of American shopping centers must be low-end to you. The other anchors of Tel-Twelve were Montgomery Ward and Crowley's. Either one was not much better than a J.C. Penny or Kohl's (and honestly before they closed, both brands were in the dumps).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
And don't presume to know what I know about Southfield. I'm there often as I have several relatives and friends that live there - I'm betting more than you have.
Then I can't imagine you're doing much looking around. Because when I go through the northern half of the city I see a stable, solidly middle-class, well-maintained city with a fairly typical array of retail.
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  #74  
Old Posted Nov 11, 2013, 4:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hudkina View Post


But you are wrong on that account. Northland has certainly declined as it was always geared toward Detroit and its residents. However, Meijer, Best Buy, Target, Lowe's, Kroger, The Home Depot, Starbucks, etc. These are all major retail giants that were perfectly fine with opening locations within the city. Even Walmart wants to tear down the old St. Bede's church and build a supercenter. And there are plenty of smaller national retailers that have opened shop as well. Honestly, Southfield never had a major retail presence as it was more heavily geared toward office development, but there are still plenty of retail options.

I don't know what fantasy world you live in, but none of those brands are low-class. They certainly aren't Pottery Barn or Nordstrom, but come on; every middle-class city has these types of shopping centers. If you think that power center is low-end, then 90% of American shopping centers must be low-end to you. The other anchors of Tel-Twelve were Montgomery Ward and Crowley's. Either one was not much better than a J.C. Penny or Kohl's (and honestly before they closed, both brands were in the dumps).
Retail is good regardless of whether it's discount or high end, but the examples you list are just perpetuating the type of city model of decentralized, auto-centric commercial centers that will ultimately lead to Southfield's decline. Southfield is no stranger to white elephants surrounded by parking.

Take this into context and apply it toward the original story. Will this retail development work? Well, as I pointed out earlier, and as you seem to confirm, Southfield's trajectory has been anything but concentrated retail centers. Even if those proposed department stores could be Targets or Walmarts, those brands would opt for a simpler store format and location that they can have more control over. It's not often the chains you mention opt for non-traditional models unless they are moving into an urban market that they know will make bank on and is worth building or leasing a more expensive store.
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  #75  
Old Posted Nov 11, 2013, 5:14 AM
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the examples you list are just perpetuating the type of city model of decentralized, auto-centric commercial centers that will ultimately lead to Southfield's decline.
Then that's the case for all of suburbia. However, suburbia will exist long beyond fossil fuels. Cars will run on electric or fuel cells before we switch to a car-free urban utopia, and those cars will be driving to Walmart parking lots whether urbanists like it or not. I'm not saying that's a good thing, but it's the more probable future than a distopian suburban wasteland that people on this forum like to predict.

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Originally Posted by Hayward View Post
Even if those proposed department stores could be Targets or Walmarts, those brands would opt for a simpler store format and location that they can have more control over. It's not often the chains you mention opt for non-traditional models unless they are moving into an urban market that they know will make bank on and is worth building or leasing a more expensive store.
But that's the reason why Southfield would want to attract mid-luxury brands to this site. The city has no problem attracting middle-class brands, so it wouldn't be a stretch for them to attract the next level up. And even if a Target or Walmart prefers a big box surrounded by ample parking, a Carson's or Dillard's would find the proposed type of development suitable.
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  #76  
Old Posted Nov 11, 2013, 3:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Hayward View Post
Retail is good regardless of whether it's discount or high end, but the examples you list are just perpetuating the type of city model of decentralized, auto-centric commercial centers that will ultimately lead to Southfield's decline. Southfield is no stranger to white elephants surrounded by parking.
Auto-centric building is actually not what's killing Southfield, which is why this proposal is so freaking ridiculous. Southfield can't compete because the market has been flooded with Southfield replicas.
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  #77  
Old Posted Nov 11, 2013, 4:43 PM
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Auto-centric building is actually not what's killing Southfield, which is why this proposal is so freaking ridiculous. Southfield can't compete because the market has been flooded with Southfield replicas.
Exactly. It has nothing to do with Southfield being an autotopia, and the public desiring something different; it's that Southfield is a somewhat shabby older iteration of sprawlburbia, and there are many "nicer" newer versions in proximity, especially with better schools, lower taxes, nicer homes, etc.
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  #78  
Old Posted Nov 11, 2013, 6:36 PM
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Originally Posted by hudkina View Post
I don't know what fantasy world you live in, but none of those brands are low-class. They certainly aren't Pottery Barn or Nordstrom, but come on; every middle-class city has these types of shopping centers. If you think that power center is low-end, then 90% of American shopping centers must be low-end to you. The other anchors of Tel-Twelve were Montgomery Ward and Crowley's. Either one was not much better than a J.C. Penny or Kohl's (and honestly before they closed, both brands were in the dumps).
The point is that Tel-Twelve mall failed, and was replaced with a smaller strip center. That's not a good thing for the city. Less tax revenue and crappier retailers isn't a net positive.
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Originally Posted by hudkina View Post
Then I can't imagine you're doing much looking around. Because when I go through the northern half of the city I see a stable, solidly middle-class, well-maintained city with a fairly typical array of retail.
Northern Southfield definitely isn't stable. It's probably changed more rapidly than any other part of Metro Detroit in recent years. It certainly isn't "bad", but if you knew the area 20 years ago, you would notice the decline. Southfield was a very desirable suburb, filled with upper income professionals, and nicer stores. It's now a second tier suburb, and not that desirable to African Americans, and the sales prices on homes reflect this decline.

Also, the retail has declined. Harvard Row shopping center, on 11 near Lahser, which used to look very affluent, has been half-empty for a decade now. Southfield Road has tons of dollar stores, second-hand stores, and the like, where previously it had nicer clothing stores and sit-down restaurants. Applegate Square, on Northwestern Highway, used to almost be like a mini-Somerset, with couture boutiques and the like. Now it's half-empty with crap retail.
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  #79  
Old Posted Nov 12, 2013, 12:42 AM
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Uh... 25 years ago is irrelevant. And the state of Northland has little to do with the success of retail in the northern half of the city. It's irrelevant in regards to any discussion of the middle-class neighborhoods/shopping centers north of 10 Mile Rd.
The point I'm trying to make is that Northland was at one time and for a long-time the crown jewel of Metro Detroit and specifically Southfield retail. If a suburb allows its once prime shopping district to dramatically decline, then it doesn't bode well for that suburb's other areas over the long-term unless there is sort of turn around. All indicators of a retail turn around are negative in Southfield (declining median incomes, property values...).

I also don't consider the Big Lots on Twelve Mile in Southfield as a sign of a stable and solid middle class.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hudkina
But you are wrong on that account. Northland has certainly declined as it was always geared toward Detroit and its residents. However, Meijer, Best Buy, Target, Lowe's, Kroger, The Home Depot, Starbucks, etc. These are all major retail giants that were perfectly fine with opening locations within the city. Even Walmart wants to tear down the old St. Bede's church and build a supercenter. And there are plenty of smaller national retailers that have opened shop as well. Honestly, Southfield never had a major retail presence as it was more heavily geared toward office development, but there are still plenty of retail options.

Bollocks! Northland was the first mall to open in Michigan and it was the only mall in Oakland County for nearly ten years. East side Detroiters were much closer to Eastland Mall and downtown shopping. Even those on the northwest side went downtown or had options at Grand River & Greenfield which was still a viable shopping district in the late 1970s and a competitor to Northland only two or three miles away.

Southfield "never had a major retail presence" Pray tell, outside of Troy, which Oakland county suburb or Metro Detroit suburb had more retail than Southfield until recently? And what Home Depot in Southfield. The one near Northland closed a few years ago.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hudkina
I don't know what fantasy world you live in, but none of those brands are low-class. They certainly aren't Pottery Barn or Nordstrom, but come on; every middle-class city has these types of shopping centers. If you think that power center is low-end, then 90% of American shopping centers must be low-end to you. The other anchors of Tel-Twelve were Montgomery Ward and Crowley's. Either one was not much better than a J.C. Penny or Kohl's (and honestly before they closed, both brands were in the dumps).
I clearly said mid to low-middle class.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hudkina
Then I can't imagine you're doing much looking around. Because when I go through the northern half of the city I see a stable, solidly middle-class, well-maintained city with a fairly typical array of retail.
Maybe you should slow down from 50 MPH when traveling down Telegraph or Northwestern Highway. You'll see the empty storefronts and "For Lease/Rent" signs on not just small shops, but large, mostly empty, shopping centers and office buildings too. Most of the retail on Telegraph south of Tel-Twelve has seriously declined. And in the neighborhoods and apartment districts one can see evidence of declining property investment.

One could say that many northwest and northeast Detroit neighborhoods in 1990 were solidly middle class, stable, and well-maintained. No one is arguing that those area's are not middle class, it's that at Southfield's current rate of decline, those areas will not be middle class for much longer. Many of those neighborhoods (specifically north of 10 Mile for your purposes) were filled with lawyers, teachers, businessmen and people with college degrees. They're being replaced by bus drivers and unskilled auto workers.
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  #80  
Old Posted Nov 12, 2013, 5:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
The point I'm trying to make is that Northland was at one time and for a long-time the crown jewel of Metro Detroit and specifically Southfield retail. If a suburb allows its once prime shopping district to dramatically decline, then it doesn't bode well for that suburb's other areas over the long-term unless there is sort of turn around.
That isn't necessarily true. Just because Northland declined doesn't mean the rest of the city is declining. Also, median incomes in the city aren't declining in most neighborhoods, and the population is on the rise again. What other inner-ring suburbs are seeing population increases? Not many...

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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
Southfield "never had a major retail presence" Pray tell, outside of Troy, which Oakland county suburb or Metro Detroit suburb had more retail than Southfield until recently?
I'm talking outside of the Northland area. Most of the major mile roads were geared more toward the office market than retail. Aside from Northland and Tel-Twelve, Southfield didn't have a lot of strip retail development.

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And what Home Depot in Southfield. The one near Northland closed a few years ago.
The one on Southfield Rd between 12 Mile and 13 Mile...

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Originally Posted by Cleveland Brown View Post
I clearly said mid to low-middle class.
It's not low-middle class. It's middle class. low-middle would be places like Burlington Coat Factory, Marshall's, TJ Maxx, Big Lots, etc. There is a low-middle shopping center in Southfield. It's across the street from the Home Depot (that you obviously didn't know existed, and therefore can't be that knowledgeable of the neighborhoods of Southfield...)
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