Placemaking Along Eight Mile

The Eight Mile Boulevard Association strives to highlight Eight Mile’s identity as a regional link by developing and implementing projects that bring continuity and cohesiveness to the corridor, while embracing the diversity of its many border communities. Below are just a few of 8MBA’s Placemaking initiatives. 

8 Mile Median Gardens
Coasting the Baseline
Conner Creekway Greenway Connection


8MBA installed thirty-six perennial gardens in the Eight Mile medians, which it continues to maintain today. These gardens, eleven of which feature community identification signs, provide year-round color and visual continuity throughout the corridor while highlighting the many communities that come together here. Our community signage gardens are sponsored by several Eight Mile stakeholders, including:

  • Botsford Hopsital
  • Canadian National Railway
  • Charter One Bank
  • City of Southfield Downtown Development Authority
  • Comerica Bank
  • DTE Energy
  • Mechanical Contractors Association of Detroit
  • The Kroger Company
  • St. John Providence Health System

Sponsorship opportunities are available for the remaining gardens! Please contact 8MBA if you are interested in helping keep Eight Mile beautiful.

Ferndale & Detroit Garden
Oak Park & Detroit Garden


Coasting the Baseline is an educational, interactive celebration of history through art, formed by the Eight Mile Boulevard Association and artist David Barr to tell the history of Eight Mile. The program involves installing obelisks within iconic public spaces along Eight Mile. The obelisks, designed by Barr, feature commemorative facts, pictures and more developed by the community.  Eventually, an obelisk will be placed in each Eight Mile community, allowing visitors to “coast” from one to the next, learning facts about Eight Mile as they go, such as its distinction as the line upon which the Northwest Territories were mapped (this is how Eight Mile got its nickname, “Baseline”).

Farmington "Coasting the Baseline" Obelisk

Mercedez-Benz Financial Services with artist David Barr
Mercedez-Benz Financial Services installing the obelisk


The Eight Mile Boulevard Association, with a coalition of community stakeholders and the cities of Detroit and Warren, secured a Transportation Alternatives Program grant of nearly $300K to establish a bicycle trail connection at Eight Mile Road and Van Dyke Avenue. This trail connection, which will help Detroit’s Conner Creek Greenway trail cross Eight Mile into Warren, will serve as the regional link between over 200 miles of bicycle trails that run through Macomb, Oakland and Wayne Counties.

The project, scheduled for installation in fall 2014, includes stamped concrete crosswalks, striped bicycle lanes in the roadway and an overhauled landscaping installation in the Eight Mile medians east and west of Van Dyke. The landscaping configuration will reduce annual maintenance costs while creating a visually appealing identifier for the trail connection, as well as layover space for non-motorized roadway users. This project embodies the principles of Complete Streets, a statewide policy of making roadways accessible to all users, while providing a guide for the consistent enhancement of major intersections throughout the corridor. 

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