Belle Isle Commonwealth: #Anarchy in Detroit, Part IV

We all know Detroit's in trouble: A bankrupt city full of crumbling houses, abandoned factory buildings, and a fast-dwindling population. 

But while politicians, unions, and investors slug it out in bankruptcy court and grasp for their share of what little cash is left, ordinary citizens are left to fend for themselves in a city with no functioning government. This is Reason TV's coverage of what happens when people are left to their own devices and forced to come up with creative ways to pick up the pieces and find solutions in a city they once loved.

This is #Anarchy in Detroit, a four-part series showcasing what actual Detroit residents are doing to make the Motor City a better place to live.

In Part IV, Reason TV visited Belle Isle, an island in the Detroit river that currently functions as a public park. And we spoke to Rod Lockwood, a real estate developer and author who's proposed a plan to purchase the island from the city for $1 billion and turn it into an income tax-free haven for wealthy investors. He says this is Detroit's best opportunity to dig itself out of the hole.

"We would expect a quarter of a trillion dollars in capital would be brought onto the island," says Lockwood. "Detroit would have its own Singapore in its backyard."

Watch the video above, and check out the rest of the series here. Part I profiles The Mower Gang, a rag-tag group of beer drinking, weed-whacking do-gooders who've taken it upon themselves to care for Detroit's abandoned parks. Part II profiles Detroit Threat Management, a private security firm supplementing the efforts of the city's beleaguered law enforcement. And Part III explores Fireweed Universe City, a neighborhood of anarchist squatters. Or, watch the whole thing here.

Approximately 3 minutes. Produced by Zach Weissmueller. Camera by Tracy Oppenheimer and Weissmueller. Music by Cassiopee Asphodel and Treaty.

Click the buttons below for downloadable versions of this video, and don't forget to subscribe to Reason TV's Youtube channel for more content like this.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • ||

    ...ordinary citizens are left to fend for themselves in a city with no functioning government

    So Detroit, like Somalia, is a libertarian paradise.

    Look at what your destructive politics have wrought, libertarians!

  • Carolynp||

    It IS amusing to see the extremist liberal policies obviously lead to anarchy; which then leads to sensible small government; which creates a healthy economy; which leads to bigger government. Lather, rinse, repeat.

Click here to follow Reason on Instagram


Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online

  • Video Game Nation: How gaming is making America freer – and more fun.
  • Matt Welch: How the left turned against free speech.
  • Nothing Left to Cut? Congress can’t live within their means.
  • And much more.