WXYZ Editorial: What's next for Detroit after Amazon bid loss?

Posted at 7:29 PM, Feb 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-01 19:29:35-05

The disappointing news: Detroit didn’t land Amazon’s second headquarters. At stake were 50,000 new, high paying, jobs. The good news: This might have been a blessing in disguise!

Detroit’s failure to make Amazon’s top 20 list, gives us a pretty clear barometer of this region’s strengths and weaknesses. The two biggest reasons cited for falling short of what the giant business was looking for was tech-savvy talent and a robust transit system. Detroit’s image, which is improving but still a challenge, may have also been a factor.

So, where do we go from here? We harness the teamwork, ingenuity and enthusiasm regional leaders used to present the Amazon bid, to work even harder and take Detroit to the next level! Let’s fix the K-12 education problems we have. Let’s figure out the best way to retain the students we educate at some of the best colleges in the world. Let’s work harder to attract top talent to our state. And let’s come together, as one united region, to move mass transit forward. We must create clean, safe and affordable mobility options that appeal to our current and future workforce.

“This region needs to get its act together on transit. We stand out as a region that is weak,” said Anderson. “I understand we are a varied region but we need to find a way to come together and realize that if we nail that issue, it will be better for the region overall.”

- Gerard "Gerry" Anderson, Chairman & CEO, DTE Energy

On top of that, we must address long-term solutions for the social and economic challenges the Detroit area faces. We have the brain power but do we have the will? We think so. Just look at how far Detroit has come 10 years.

Amazon was a good wakeup call for America’s comeback city. There’s no question that Amazon won’t be the last great economic opportunity we’ll encounter. Let’s just make sure we’re prepared to seize the moment when the next one comes.

I’m Mike Murri, Vice President & General Manager

Broadcast: February 1 - 4, 2018