Sunday, January 11, 2009

A Model for Detroit?

I have been remiss in noting that front page of Thursday's New York Times featured an article on Pittsburgh and the collapse of the steel industry. Specifically, the piece asked if Detroit could learn a lesson from the 'Burgh as it faces turmoil in the automobile industry.

From David Streitfeld's article:

A generation ago, the steel industry that built Pittsburgh and still dominated its economy entered its death throes. In the early 1980s, the city was being talked about the way Detroit is now. Its very survival was in question.

Deindustrialization in Pittsburgh was a protracted and painful experience. Yet it set the stage for an economy that is the envy of many recession-plagued communities, particularly those where the automobile industry is struggling for its life.

“If people are looking for hope, it’s here,” said Sabina Deitrick, an urban studies expert at the University of Pittsburgh. “You can have a decent economy over a long period of restructuring.”

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