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Bringing Pure Michigan to Downtown

Story by Project for Public Spaces March 30th, 2014
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Campus Martius After_DDP.jpg

Campus Martius Park opened in 2004 and over the last decade has become one of the great public spaces in the United States. The park hosts hundreds of programs and events annually in all seasons and has been an important catalyst for commercial development in the surrounding blocks.

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Building on other “Lighter, Quicker, Cheaper” Placemaking efforts taking place in the area, we transformed an underutilized lawn in the park into a seasonal beach that includes a curved deck with colorful seating and a Beach Bar and Grille and a large sand filled area with lounge chairs, umbrellas, and an extra-long shared table.


Community programming at the beach includes aerobics classes, sand castle building, live musical performances, and lots of informal play in the sun and sand. At the end of the season the beach got packed up to make room for fall programming and the winter ice rink, but it will be back and ready for another summer in June 2014.

Footnote: All photos copyright Project for Public Spaces or Downtown Detroit Partnership 2013.
Campus Martius Park, Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI, United States