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May 09, 1986 - Image 17

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1986-05-09

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

17

dr
moms
wiffafor 6 ill

"Talk goes around . . . 'they're
on their way out, they're moving.'
That's a defeatist attitude. We
have decided to think positively,"
asserts Mandelbaum.
Many families have made their
decision to move because eco-
nomically it is a healthy time to
buy and sell, with mortgage rates
lower than they've been in many
years. Others follow friends
who've already moved. Most of
the families who were displaced
by the freeway left several years
ago.
an
Dworkin,
Michael
economist who was involved in
getting 1-696 concessions for his
Beacon Square subdivision in
Southfield, said, "Because of eco-
nomic conditions, there'd been
relatively little turnover of resi-
dents in this subdivision in sev-
eral years. Now that mortgage
rates are down and a number of
the original owners have families
who've grown and 'left the nest,'
we are seeing some movement.
It's impossible to disentangle the
cause. Some people are leaving
because of the freeway — but
only a few — not a mass exodus.
"The expectation and the con-
struction are worse than the
reality of the freeway. Studies of
other construction sites show
that most of the people who are
concerned about living near a
freeway, or are concerned about
its construction, tend to leave be-
fore it's completed. Those who
stay weren't too concerned about
it."
Commendably, according to
Jewish community highway om-
budsman Eli Kaplan, highway
contractors for the most part
have kept their part of the
agreement to not work on shab-
bat and holidays in Jewish areas.
From time to time they have
found it necessary to work out-
side the prescribed hours and
days. "There've been circum-
stances where they have had
emergency requirements and
wanted certain phases of the con-
struction to be completed by cut-
off dates, Rabbi Kaplan said.
"Where it was warranted, we've
granted them extensions and
waivers, and allowed them to
work on designated Saturdays
and late Friday."
Fear that the freeway would
divide the Jewish community in
Oak Park and parts of Southfield
into two separate geographical
communities gave rise to the con-
cepts of decks over the freeway it-
self. Landscaped to resemble
parks and walkways, the decks
over 1-696 will give a feeling of
continuity in the neighborhood,
and minimize any appearance of
separate communities. When
completed, they will simplify
crossing over the highway for Or-
thodox Jews, who must walk on
shabbat and holidays. Oak Park
Mayor Charlotte Rothstein said,
"It's probably the only place in
the United States where they
have put up something like this
to accommodate the Orthodox
Jewish community."
A few of the private contractors
have been more than unusually
aware of different communal
needs and environmental con-

Continued on next page

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