Tag: Detroit

This image shows the Michigan Central Station in Detroit from the carriage entrance side. The shot was taken from the back side of the building, close to where the tracks came in to the building. Carriages used to drop off or pick up passengers from under the metal structure.

Michigan Central Station

Posted under HDR

Michigan Central Station

I’ve been finding it difficult to get out and shoot new material for a variety of reasons, but today was such a nice day I decided to make an effort to get out and at least shoot something. I decided to take a short drive into Detroit to check out the progress on the Michigan Central Station. The owners are finally doing something to at least stabilize the building. Mostly this involves tightening security around the station to keep people out, removing the broken windows and putting in new windows, and working on the roof. Progress is slow, but they have definitely made some progress at least regarding the windows on the lower level. They haven’t actually replaced any that I could see, but they have removed the broken glass.

Razor Wire

Posted under Detroit

Razor Wire

One of the coolest and most depressing buildings in Detroit has to be the old Michigan Central Station (Depot). The station was used by Amtrak until 1988 when it was abandoned and left to basically rot. The station consists of the main railway facilities as well as an 18 story office tower. The interesting thing about the office tower is that the top floors were never finished. Anyway, the building has been decaying for years and has been threatened with demolition many times.

Metropolis – Renaissance Center

Posted under Detroit

Metropolis - Renaissance Center

As I was going through my Lightroom catalog recently, I ran across a series of shots that I took on the Detroit edition of Scott Kelby’s Worldwide Photowalk from 2009. Yesterday’s image of Detroit’s Renaissance Center was taken on the 2008 edition. This shot was taken at the end of the walk as I was walking around the Ren-Cen to see what other angles might be interesting. I had seen an image of the Renaissance Center on Flickr which was similar to this so I thought I would try. What attracted me to the shot on Flickr was that it reminded me of a shot by Michael Kenna of the Rouge Plant in Detroit. I really liked the criss-crossing elements and when I found this angle I knew I had what I wanted. The combination of the towers of the building, coupled with the people mover track and the pedestrian walkway also made me think of the visions of the future that people had in the early 20th century. I wish there had been some low hanging clouds or something to add a bit more atmosphere to the shot, but I still like it.

Renaissance Center Once Again?

Posted under Detroit

Renaissance Center - Detroit

The Renaissance Center in Detroit, Michigan was built in the mid-70’s. At the time, the thought was that this new set of buildings would help provide for a ‘renaissance’ of the city of Detroit. Alas it wasn’t to be. The building was more of a fortress than anything else. It had large berms which faced the main street, and the other side was the river. This created a structure which was more of an island than anything else. A couple years ago, General Motors purchased the buildings and moved it’s world headquarters to it. There was a bit of irony in this, since the Renaissance Center (aka ‘RenCen’) had significant funding from the Ford family.

One of the best things about living in Michigan is when you get a warm, indian summer day in late October. The sun is starting to hang a bit lower in the sky and the afternoon light is terrific, particularly when coupled with blue sky and red or yellow leaves on the trees. Last weekend I spent an afternoon at Greenfield Village and the day just got better as the day went on. It was getting close to closing time at the museum and I was walking toward the entrance when I passed by the quarter-size replica of Ford’s original Mack Ave. plant. Something about the light on the building, the leaves in the tree and the clouds in the sky just compelled me to take this shot. I popped on my rental 16mm fisheye and set up my tripod to capture shots for an HDR image.

he Michigan Central Depot in Detroit, Michigan is such a perfect analogue to the city of Detroit. It was once a beautiful place but it has been allowed to decay. The building has been threatened with demolition for years, but so far it remains standing. Some good things are happening, at least in the surrounding area. Private organizations are working to clean up the park in front of the station. In addition, they are buying up buildings and either demolishing or attempting to rehabilitate them, depending on their condition. The depot itself is a favorite location for film shoots and has been featured in movies such as ‘The Island’ and ‘Transformers’ among others. It’s a shame that the best feature of the building is it’s decay, but if it helps raise awareness about the building that is probably a good thing.

I was looking through my Lightroom catalog trying to find images which might be fun to play with using the Silver Efex Pro plugin I just purchased. As I scanned across the folders, I found a series of images that I had taken at the Michigan Central Depot in Detroit, Michigan. The building is famous for both its beauty and sorry condition. It has been threatened with demolition, and yet it still stands. Several movies have been shot here and it is a popular place for urbex photographers to visit.

The Tunnel

Posted under Michigan

Colorful Tunnel

I figured that after a series of asylum pictures it might be nice to do something completely different. This shot was taken a couple of years ago when my family and I returned from a trip. The picture shows the tunnel which connects Concourse C to the main McNamara Terminal at Detroit’s Metro Airport. The tunnel is quite interesting. There is ambient music playing in the background and they use continually change the color of the lights. There are two long moving sidewalks which pass by long panels of glass sculpture. It’s a really nice change of pace from the typical chaos found in airports.


Posted under Detroit


It’s hot here in Michigan, and elsewhere throughout the US, so I thought it appropriate to post this image of a child cooling off in a fountain. The picture was taken in 2008 during Scott Kelby’s Worldwide Photowalk held in Detroit, Michigan. The fountain is located along the Detroit riverwalk, just behind the Renaissance Center.