Citizens Against the Grand Prix on Belle Isle
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We believe that it's time to pull the plug on the Detroit Grand Prix event on Belle Isle. Before bankruptcy, the City could not afford to properly maintain the Island, so offers by the Grand Prix to run the race there in exchange for making "improvements" might have made some sense. Now that the State of Michigan has taken over and has made Belle Isle a State Park, the time has come to allow the Island to be used as it was intended - as a nature and recreational park to be used by all people, year round.
This current year, the Grand Prix began setting up 8 weeks before the race. That means concrete barriers inhibiting access to the riverfront, blocking bike lanes, etc. When you include the weeks afterward to dismantile it and clean up, this means the island is essentially monopolized by the race people for the better part of three months. This is prime park season, with public access impeded to the river, and most public gathering places in the half of the Island where the race course exists. The fact that an immense portion of the island near the Fountain and Casino has been encased in concrete - creating a gigantic parking lot - to serve the purposes of the race organizers, is a permanent blot and eyesore on the face of the island.
It's time to say no to the rich and powerful who have taken over the island, and return it back to the people.
Move the Grand Prix somewhere else - get it off Belle Isle.
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