A Green City of the Future

Detroit has pioneering innovation and creativity built into its DNA. As the city begins to emerge from decades of economic decline, its culture and landscape are uniquely positioned to lead the world in redefining what it means to be an equitable, green city in the 21st century.

American Forests is helping make that happen. With funding, volunteer and technical support from Bank of America and the U.S. Forest Service, we are at the center of a robust coalition that includes city agencies, local nonprofits, universities and businesses.

Much like the city’s successful street light illumination project, our team envisions a Detroit whose neighborhoods are all teeming with healthy street trees, verdant parks, vacant lots transformed into centers of community revitalization, and a skilled, local workforce to manage it all.

To that end, this team is developing tree canopy data and urban forestry priorities to guide long-term reforestation efforts in Detroit. We have planted trees and helped develop an inexpensive model for revitalizing vacant land in the Osborn Outdoor Education Center that has been replicated elsewhere in the city.

We are currently focused on creating two tree nurseries that can supply inexpensive trees and create jobs in the city for years to come. One nursery revitalizes the city’s abandoned tree nursery as a workforce training center. The other revitalizes vacant land as part of a broader revitalization effort in the Rosa Parks – Clairmount area.

Going forward, we seek to expand job training, innovative funding, and tree planting opportunities in the neighborhoods that can most benefit from a more robust tree canopy.

Our Experts

eric candela manager community releaf urban forestry american forests 2019

Eric Candela, Senior Manager, Community ReLeaf

Phone: 248.238.8605
Email Eric

Ian Leahy, Vice President of Urban Forestry

Phone: 202.370.4524
Email Ian

Our Partners