For at least five years, residents of the neighborhood surrounding the Marathon gas station located at 12050 Grand River have been dealing with all sorts of disturbances at the gas station, ranging from fights to you name it. It’s the sort of thing not unfamiliar to far too many Detroit residents who still don’t find themselves living in the revitalized Detroit they keep hearing about so much.
Last week, after getting wind of a neighborhood protest sponsored by the Detroit Association of Black Organizations (DABO), the owners of the gas station have apparently agreed to neighborhood demands that the station participate in the Detroit program Project Greenlight. The hope of community members is that this agreement will finally help the community become safer.
The significance of this is that we have an [unsafe place] ….and the residents over there who have been trying to impact what’s been going on at that gas station have had some success,” said DABO Executive Director Rev. Horace Sheffield, who said his building is located directly across the street from the gas station.
“We meet every 4th Thursday to discuss what’s going on with community and this has been a consistent thorn in our flesh. I’m there on the corner and [people in] my office building have to get up and try to help break up fights. And so we come out of our building once or twice a week to try to maintain peace and deal with what’s going on on that corner.
“It’s been a problem for a good four or five years,” he said. “Even sometimes people at the bus stop have to run and we have to let them in our building because of fights and things that are going on across the street.”
“They [the gas station owners] have a responsibility to that neighborhood, to the kids in that neighborhood.”
From the Project Greenlight website:
“PROJECT GREEN LIGHT DETROIT is the first public-private-community partnership of its kind, blending a mix of real-time crime-fighting and community policing aimed at improving neighborhood safety, promoting the revitalization and growth of local businesses, and strengthening DPD’s efforts to deter, identify, and solve crime.
“Our initial eight Project Green Light Detroit Partners have all installed, and will maintain, a number of high-definition (1080p) indoor and outdoor cameras. The stations also all upgraded to high-speed network connections capable of allowing for consistent video streaming to DPD. Moreover, the stations also have agreed to provide adequate lighting on all parts of their properties — and to making other improvements as needed to ensure that their stations are customer-friendly, safe, and inviting.”
EACH PARTNERING STATION has also provided for, installed, and will maintain external Project Green Light Detroit signage, including metal flag signs under their station canopies, decals at the top of their doors, and physical green lights above their price signs — all to signify to customers and community members that they are Project Green Light Detroit Partners.”