Sustainable Detroit Forum



Image: Kari Rosteck

The first annual Sustainable Detroit Forum did not only preach on the importance of sustainability, it took the first steps of promoting it, firsthand. Creating a sustainability movement in Detroit requires the support of numerous institutions, the community, and the government. This forum promoted communication between these strong pillars of Detroit by allowing opportunities for these stakeholders to present their sustainable projects in Detroit, collaborate and get a better understanding of how we will all work together to bring sustainability to the forefront of our city.

AIA Detroit COTE, U.S. Green Building Council, and numerous non-profits facilitated the first Annual Sustainable Detroit Forum at Wayne State University’s McGregor Memorial Conference Center. More than 200 people attended and the event featured keynote addresses, musical interludes, a Green Mall Exhibition, and 24 Lighting Round presentations of sustainable projects in the Detroit region.  In addition, an interactive workshop was held at the end of the day focused on the question; How do we move the sustainability movement forward in Detroit TOGETHER?

The forum created an environment for knowledge pollination and cross knowledge transfer, most prominently between non-profits and businesses in Detroit. Also, the Green Mall Exhibition, organized by AIA Detroit COTE member Paul Bierman-Lytle, showcased many Detroit based companies’ sustainable products and services. A key component to the engagement and success of the Sustainable Detroit Forum was the workshop that aimed to answer the question:  How do we move the sustainability movement forward in Detroit TOGETHER? Workshop attendees broke out into three groups and held a facilitated discussion on this question and the responses were recorded.  The whole group got back together and reported out. Lastly, participants were given dots to place next to the ideas they thought should be implemented first and foremost.