A Day In The Life Of Detroit: Gratiot Avenue Photo Gallery

As with Woodward Avenue last month, we spent the day exploring Gratiot Avenue, shooting scenes of people and places in hopes of showing a more nuanced, if still incomplete, look at life in Detroit.

This check-cashing/buy-gold joint obviously was once a Taco Bell. Do they get points for adaptive reuse or does check-cashing and gold-buying disqualify them completely?

Disappointingly, Gratiot has several cool, old storefronts that appeared to be well-maintained but were no longer in business.

That’s not to say we were unable to find any commerce. On a lovely block of Eastburn, strawberry lemonade is available. And not just any strawberry lemonade, but the original strawberry lemonade.

And this woman was flagging down customers for a hand car wash. A drink in a paper bag is not included.

Puppy says hello.

This back-to-nature block was just around the corner.

On Gratiot and Iroquois, New Zeland artist Askew One paints a mural commemorating a friend who passed away. He’s in town for an art exhibition at the Inner State Gallery in Eastern Market Friday, was driving around, liked this wall at Monique’s One Stop Shop and wandered into the store to ask if he could paint it. (They said yes.)

That’s one way to cover a floor…. A passerby tells us demolition work began on this building at Gratiot and Eastwood last week. Then it stopped and the demo equipment left the site, leaving this half-gone hulk. Fortunately, the orange posts and yellow tape will keep people safe.

The same street corner, from a slightly prettier angle.

The Franklin Branch of the Detroit Public Library.

Assumption Grotto, a Roman Catholic church and cemetery.

Better Made potato chips on the production line, which is visible from big windows along the sidewalk. The building has a factory outlet store adjacent to this window, which is lucky because you can definitely smell the chips cooking from the sidewalk.

We couldn’t see much at the Faygo plant, but we assume this sign in the parking lot means Red Pop isn’t considered “intoxicating.”

This gold covered and gold filled building on Mt. Elliot and Gratiot is featured in the opening credits for Low Winter Sun.

In extreme close-up, the never to be completed jail to nowhere possesses a kind of beauty. If you can only forget it’s intended purpose and the money wasted¬†on this hot mess.

Downtown’s newest parking garage rises.

We started with a photo looking down Gratiot, toward downtown. From atop the Compuware Garage, here’s Gratiot from downtown, looking east-ish.

This article was part of a series originally published on Deadline Detroit. It was co-written with Jeff Wattrick.