Meet CuriosiD - a series for the inquisitive. Our news team works with listeners like you to find answers to great questions about Detroit and the region.Are you curious about the Detroit region or the people who live here?
I’m looking to transition to Detroit to start a new business and it’s difficult to determine the quality and density of the neighborhoods on Google Maps Street View because they haven’t been updated since 2013 and sometimes even longer. I’d like to know why that is. Why haven’t the maps been updated?
As part of WDET's series CuriosID, a listener wonders if driving an electric car could actually create more pollution, since it would force power plants to generate more electricity to charge it, thereby generating more smog.
“There used to be a Times Square in Detroit. I know there’s still a People Mover stop, and I know there’s a street, but there used to be an actual square. And I think it was named after the old newspaper, the Detroit Times, but where was the newspaper headquartered? And also, how big of a paper was the Times?”
WDET listener Priya Ganji has a diverse group of friends of Arab heritage, and she’s noticed their family, religious and cultural traditions are sometimes different from her own and other Americans’. So the 14-year-old asked
“How did the Arab community grow to be what it is today in Detroit?”
“I show American Saddlebred Horses and we used to have a couple big shows up here at the state fairgrounds which are no longer available. And it was very sad to see that the Michigan legislature decided not to pay for the maintenance of the coliseum and the grounds.
Listener Cheryl Pernell was intereted in examples of busing in Detroit Public Schools around 1963. Pernell was bused to Dossin Elementary for the 1st through 7th grades, instead of going to Ruthruff in her neighborhood.
“Why is it just ‘John R?’ Most people use the last name of a person, not the first name, and an initial, so, I always thought that was kind of strange. And also, who was John R., and why was the street named after him?”
"Why are there five separate cities that are seemingly small size with the same basic name in the Grosse Pointes? I was trying to figure out if there was there some type of dispute over land or if they were controlled by families or something of that nature?”
“I moved from Washington, D.C. to Detroit in the mid-’90. And I’ve always loved the root beer float and people said, ‘You have to try the Boston Cooler.’ So, I tried it and was like, ‘What’s the deal here? Why’s it called a Boston Cooler and not a ginger ale cooler or something like that? I’m just curious.”
How did the International Ambassador Bridge become privately held? It just seems that, like, two sovereign countries should be in charge of an international crossing, a really large international crossing?
“I pass a tall old business building that appears to be empty now but it has a very decorative lintel over the entrance that has the capital letters N-B-C and I was wondering what that was and if it was the National Broadcasting Corporation or something else.” Terry Segal
“Why are sidewalks in Indian Village stamped with Swastikas? The stamps are uniform and official, like a company laying the concrete made them. Do they predate the Nazi party in Germany? Are they associated with a company affiliated with the Nazi party? The sidewalks are clearly old, but I’m not sure they are date stamped to provide a clue.”