Connecting communities since 1993

  • May 21, 2014 2:24 PM | Deleted user

    Winfred Blackmon, President of Shaefer 7/8 Lodge Association in front of the abandoned All Star's Club

    After months of hearings, court proceedings and advocacy, it appears that the former All Star Adult Entertainment Facility will be prohibited from ever opening its doors again on Eight Mile Road. Since 2011, the facility has been fighting to reopen its doors after being padlocked as a result of several run-ins with the law. On Tuesday, April 29, 2014 Judge Gillis of the Michigan 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals in Wayne County officially affirmed a February 21, 2013 decision of Detroit’s Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) to determine the adult use legally “abandoned”, extinguishing its ability to re-open. 

    8MBA along with the Schaefer 7/8 Lodge Association and dozens of area residents and even neighborhood associations from throughout the City of Detroit formed an advocacy coalition that urged the City of Detroit’s Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) to deny the facility’s attempts to re-open by transferring a liquor license, which it lost after several violations of law, to the business. After four hearings, the BZA ruled that the adult use formerly on the property was legally “abandoned”, preventing the transfer as well as the re-opening of the facility. Because of zoning restrictions which prevent the opening of adult entertainment facilities on Eight Mile, All Stars was a “non-conforming use”. The decisions of the Court and BZA extinguish that status and prevent the facility from re-opening.

    According to the City of Detroit Attorney who argued the case, Senior Assistant Corporation Counsel John Nader, All Star could file an Application for Leave to Appeal, which essentially means that they would have to fight to appeal their most recent appeal, which a higher court does not have to grant.

    8MBA will continue to monitor this issue and ensure that this victory for the greater Eight Mile community is maintained. We sincerely appreciate the courage and wisdom of the employees and officials who stood up for the rule of law and supported the vitality and safety of Detroit’s neighborhoods.

    Read the Order & Opinion //HERE

    Learn more about the path to closure for All Star:

    - Controversial All Star Gentlemen's Club fighting to reopen after being padlocked three years ago
    10/2012 - Reopening of Detroit’s All Star strip club opposed
    12/2011 - Police Shut Down Detroit Strip Club

  • May 21, 2014 11:24 AM | Deleted user

    On April 25th, 2014, the Eight Mile Boulevard Association hosted our 15th Annual Leadership Luncheon at the newly expanded Cobo Center in downtown Detroit. 

    With almost 700 guests in attendance, our largest luncheon to date saw the Big 4 (Mayor Mike Duggan, and County Executive’s Patterson, Ficano and Hackel) discuss many of the hot topics of the day affecting southeast Michigan.  Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley followed up the discussion with remarks centered around the importance of regional cooperation and the state’s ongoing efforts at revitalization. 

    The discussion was deftly moderated by Charlie Langton of WWJ News Radio 950. Always a popular stop was the auction and raffle tables where attendees scooped up some wonderful items donated by a host of great local businesses. 

    The 8MBA is truly appreciative of the efforts of everyone involved to make this event our best yet!

    If you attended this years luncheon, make sure to complete the feedback survey and to check and see if you made it into any of the event photos!
    We want to hear your feedback! Please take this 5-minute survey to share your experience at this years event so we can improve for next year.

    The photos are here!! Make sure to check out the photos on our website and to Tag yourself on Facebook!

    Read more articles about the Leadership Luncheon:

  • May 20, 2014 2:15 PM | Deleted user

    Lunar Home Improvement
    13491-13493 E. Eight Mile Road, Warren, MI  48089
    Sale Price: $99,900

    With the current zoning allowing for a myriad of uses, this 1,040 s.f. facility is a well-maintained gem. It has 180 feet of frontage on Eight Mile that includes a showroom and office.  Property also includes four garages and parking for 12 vehicles.

    For more information about the property contact:
    Jack L. Williams
    Colliers International

  • May 19, 2014 2:42 PM | Deleted user

    8MBA is gearing up for warmer weather with enhancements to the 36 perennial gardens we’ve installed and continue to maintain along the corridor.

    Thanks to $13,000 from MDOT, we will be redesigning plant beds to reduce materials usage and installing new plants to provide lush, vibrant landscaping throughout the corridor. The enhancements will reduce the annual cost of maintaining our gardens by $2,800 each year and are scheduled for completion by the end of June 2014.

    8MBA’s garden enhancements are part of a corridor-wide blitz by Eight Mile’s communities and MDOT to ensure that our medians are well-maintained throughout warm-weather months.

    In addition to our garden crews, you’ll see regular mowing and litter removal throughout the corridor. 8MBA facilitated a partnership between MDOT and the Cities of Ferndale, Oak Park, Southfield and Warren to coordinate the maintenance of Eight Mile’s medians between Grand River and Kelly. We sincerely appreciate their collaborative efforts to keep Eight Mile looking its best.

    Please contact 8MBA with any feedback about our gardens or the condition of the Eight Mile medians. 

  • May 19, 2014 2:40 PM | Deleted user

    8MBA is teaming up with the International Council of Shopping Centers to promote the 44th Annual International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) Michigan Idea Exchange & Alliance Program. The Idea Exchange is coming to Novi on July 24, 2014 at The Suburban Collection Showplace. 

    The event features a luncheon with Keynote remarks from the COO of Rouse Properties, Ben Schall. Rouse owns 34 malls and 23.4 million square feet of retail space from coast-to-coast, and is just one example of the caliber of real estate moguls, economic development professionals and other movers and shakers in real estate who will be in attendance. 

    After lunch, experience ten Roundtable discussions, a Municipal Runway and a Retail Runway, packed with opportunities to gain insights and connections that can help your projects soar.  The day is capped off by a two-hour Deal Making session where Real Estate Developers, Brokers, Mall Managers and Professional Service Providers will connect with Retailers.

    Don’t miss your chance to be part of the real estate action in Southeast Michigan!

    8MBA will be there - Click here for information on how you can join us.

    Attention Eight Mile developers, real estate agents and building owners: 

    In addition to attending the event, 8MBA will be hosting a table highlighting properties and projects along the Eight Mile corridor.  If you would like us to highlight your property, project or available space, please contact 8MBA by June 10th.

  • May 19, 2014 2:28 PM | Deleted user

    2012 Clean Up of Farmington's "Coasting the Baseline" made possible with the assistance of 8MBA, Mercedes-Benz Financial Services and artist David Barr.

    The City of Southfield is close to installing Eight Mile’s fourth Coasting the Baseline Obelisk! To-date, approximately $28K has been raised from partners on Eight Mile, in Southfield and throughout the region to support the installation of the obelisk as part of a new plaza being constructed at the corner of Eight Mile and Rutland in Southfield.

    The project, supported entirely through donations, will add to a collection of obelisks along Eight Mile in Novi, Northville and Farmington Hills. Designed by Michigan native and world-renowned sculptor David Barr, the obelisks include engraved references to early surveying methods used throughout America, Eight Mile’s role as the first line on the first map of Michigan and elements of local history for communities along Eight Mile Road.

    Conceptual drawing of Eight Mile and Rutland site for the Coasting the Baseline - Southfield obelisk and plaza

    With an expected installation this August, the City of Southfield is inviting businesses, community groups and others connected to Eight Mile Road to be part of the project.

    Tax-deductible donation opportunities are still available. For a nominal fee, you can have your name, company or organization etched in stone as part of Southfield’s rich history.

    For more information or to make a donation, contact:

    • Southfield City Councilmen Kenson Siver, Donald Fracassi or Jeremy Moss (248-796-5150)
    • Southfield City Planner Terry Croad (248-796-4154) or

    8MBA is pleased to support Southfield in their efforts to advance the Coasting the Baseline Program. 

  • May 19, 2014 11:36 AM | Deleted user

    A guest column by Sheryl Mitchell, April 27, 2014

    The opinions expressed in this blog were first expressed in the Oakland 115 on April 27th, 2014 and are solely those of the guest blogger.

    I had the opportunity to attend the Leadership Luncheon on April 25th that was held at Cobo by the Eight Mile Boulevard Association (8MBA) and witnessed an unexpected show of regional collaboration that was so powerful that it almost brought me to tears. As a bit of background, the 8MBA is a nonprofit organization that was formed in 1993 to revitalize and promote the Eight Mile transportation, business and residential corridor by linking the public and private sectors.

    The luncheon is their annual fundraising event and featured a panel discussion of the “Big Four” – City of Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel, Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano, and Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson. The panel discussion was moderated by TV Commentator and Attorney Charlie Langston. The room was packed with several hundred people, who like me, were probably expecting some heated discussions about regionalizing the water system, Detroit’s bankruptcy, and the usual snips and bravado that this group is well known for displaying when in each other’s company.

    But the moment that resonated in my mind and touched my heart was not related to a caustic comment, but a spontaneous action just before the discussion began. The gentlemen were introduced one at a time and each entered the stage to take their seat. First Duggan, then Hackel and Ficano. Patterson was last and was in his wheelchair as a result of the serious injuries that he sustained in a car accident over a year ago.

    The panelists were to be seated in raised bar seats and it was difficult for Patterson to maneuver himself from the wheelchair to the be seated in this tall chair. What happened next was that the other three men left their seats and stood shoulder to shoulder to surround and support Patterson. This was unplanned and unrehearsed. From the audience, I couldn’t even see Patterson. All I saw as a solid wall of brotherly support. A wall of men so strong and firm that even if Patterson had completely lost all ability to stand on his own…they had him! They would not let him slip or fall. They were each there without any hesitation to fully support him in reaching his objective. He didn’t ask for their help. But, each of his colleagues was there without question or hesitation. They demonstrated that by working together they could overcome any obstacle. They worked together as a team, unselfish, not hindered by political one upsmanship.

    Their action only took a couple of seconds. But it has permanently embedded in my mind the question: “What if they acted this way when they were discussing often difficult regional issues?” What if instead of building walls around their political geographic turfs, they instead locked arms and built a solid bridge to connect, protect, and preserve their shared territory of Southeast Michigan? What if they realized that in their most vulnerable moments, that the others wouldn’t take advantage or poke fun in an attempt to humiliate them and their situation; but instead that knew that their neighbors would stand beside them and earnestly work together to ensure the success of even the weakest member, because ultimately we are all in this together.

    This profoundly transformed my perspective of what can happen in Southeast Michigan. If this could happen in a few seconds on a stage…then possibly it could transpire in the backrooms of political negotiations. And, just maybe – there is a glimmer of hope that Eight Mile will no longer be the road that divides Detroit and the Counties of Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb. But, Eight Mile can be the symbol of the unifying thread that connects our region. Just maybe.

    For more information on 8 Mile Boulevard Association check out their website at

    A link to the original blog can be found here.

  • March 27, 2014 12:44 PM | Deleted user

    Governor Rick Snyder providing closing remarks alongside former Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and County Executives Robert Ficano and L. Brooks Patterson at the 2013 Leadership Luncheon.

    Now in its 15th year, the annual 8MBA Leadership Luncheon is once again right around the corner, set for Friday, April 25, 2014. The region’s “Big Four” – Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan and County Executives Robert Ficano, Mark Hackel and L. Brooks Patterson – return to center stage with WWJ’s own Charlie Langton as moderator for an interactive discussion about the challenges facing Eight Mile and our region, and our efforts to address them.

    The 8MBA Leadership Luncheon’s continuous growth has helped it become an important event on the calendar for southeast Michigan, with increasing attendance that not even our Eight Mile venues can hold.  2014 is no different, as we bring this year’s event to the newly renovated Cobo Center! 

    Overlooking the Detroit River, Cobo Center’s new Grand Ballroom provides a breathtaking backdrop for our traditional afternoon of networking and discussion among one of the region’s largest gatherings of movers, shakers and decision-makers.

    This year, we recognize the “Faces of Eight Mile”, paying homage to the business, government and community leaders that support the revitalization of Eight Mile through their efforts, including Luncheon guests like you, whose tax-deductible ticket purchases also fund the 8MBA programs that are driving positive change on Eight Mile. 

    As we emerge from Michigan’s arctic winter, be sure you secure one of the hottest tickets this spring.

    Click Here to register online today!

    Once you’ve saved your seat, be sure to visit our Facebook page for a sneak peak at the exciting lineup of auction and raffle items that will be up for grabs this year.

  • March 27, 2014 12:38 PM | Deleted user

    2013 projects included repainting Viking Boxing Gym with Challenge Detroit

    May 3rd brings the return of one of our signature events, 8MBA Clean The D. This massive volunteer-led effort brings together hundreds of students, corporate team members, neighborhood block groups, and more to spend the day on a corridor-wide beautification blitz, including cleaning, planting, painting, and weeding projects at specific sites along Eight Mile.

    The event not only fights blight by enhancing the aesthetic appearance of the corridor, but it unites a highly diverse group of stakeholders – students and workers, young and old, urban and suburban – around the common cause of civic engagement. By connecting our greater regional community at Eight Mile, where all assemble to make a difference, 8MBA Clean the D helps flip the script on an outdated perception of Eight Mile as a regional divider.

    As Clean the D continues to grow each year, 8MBA continually invites individuals and groups to submit project ideas for our dedicated volunteer groups to tackle, or to join us out on Eight Mile.

    If you have a project idea on Eight Mile Road that you would like us to consider for Clean the D 2014, or if you’d like to roll up your sleeves and join us, please contact Steve Horstman via email at
  • March 27, 2014 12:20 PM | Deleted user

    Advantage Health Center after a $1.6 Million renovation

    The 8MBA Façade Improvement Program’s first 2013-2014 Award Recipient has completed renovations and is undergoing final inspection. Advantage Health Center at 4669 E. Eight Mile in Warren has completed their overhaul of the former H.J. Oldenkamp building.

    Advantage Health Center received a $5K award from 8MBA to support renovations including new signage, landscaping improvements and a façade renovation that involved new paint and an updated window/paneling system. In addition to financial support, 8MBA also provided design consultation on painting and signage improvements. As property owner, Advantage Health Center invested $1.6 million into the project.

    Advantage Health Center Before - Courtesy of Google Street view

    Advantage Health Center Mid-Renovation

    Advantage Health Center - After

    After - Eight Mile Signage

    A new and more transparent storefront system along Eight Mile.

    Thanks to 8MBA design assistance, the intricate brick diamond detailing of the East facade has been restored.
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