Highland Park Home to Highest Number of Rental Units in the Region

In 2015 there were nine cities in Southeastern Michigan where more than 50 percent of the housing units were renter occupied. Ypsilanti had the highest percentage of renters at 69 percent, followed by Royal Oak Township at 67 percent. Ann Arbor, Auburn Hills and Detroit, all homes to universities, also had more than 50 percent of its housing units renter occupied. In Detroit, 51 percent of the occupied housing units were renters. Areas with the highest percentage of renters in Detroit were located along the river and in the lower Woodward Corridor. In these areas more than 75 percent of the housing units were occupied by renters. Conversely, areas such as Palmer Park and Rosedale Park had among the lowest percentage of renters, ranging between 2 and 30 percent. There were only 20 Census tracts in Detroit where 30 percent or less of homes were occupied by renters. As seen below, majority of the Census tracts throughout Detroit had between 30 and 60 percent of the occupied housing units occupied by renters.

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At the county level, Livingston County had the lowest percentage of renters at 15 percent while Wayne County had the highest percentage at 37 percent. In Livingston County, Cohoctah Township had the lowest percentage of renters at 3 percent and Howell had the highest percentage at 48. In Wayne County, it wasn’t Detroit with the highest rental rate, but rather Highland Park at 64 percent. Grosse Pointe Farms had the lowest rental rate in Wayne County at 2.6 percent.

Regionally, the average percentage of homes rented was 22 percent in 2015; of the 210 communities in the region 112 of them had less than 22 percent of the housing units occupied by renters. Of those 112 communities, 47 of them had rental rates below 10 percent. Novi Township, located in Wayne County, had the lowest percentage of renters at 2 percent, followed by Orchard Lake (2.3%) and Grosse Pointe Farms (2.6%).

While there were less than 10 cities in the region with rental rates above 50 percent, we will highlight next week that there has been a trend toward renting in recent years, particularly in certain areas. In a recent Detroit Free Press article higher rental rates was attributed to the increased number of foreclosures that occurred during the mortgage crisis. A 2015 New York Times article discusses how homeownership rates had been falling for eight years straight at that time, largely due to the burst of the housing bubble.

Percentage of Residents Insured in Southeastern Michigan Increases since 2010

Across Southeastern Michigan all seven counties experienced an increase in the percentage of residents with health insurance between 2010 and 2015. In 2010 then President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law; this is a piece of legislation that was crafted to increase access to and the quality of health insurance. Wayne County experienced the largest increase in overall health insurance coverage at 2.8 percent. In 2015, according the American Community Survey, 87.7 percent of the Wayne County population had health insurance. Wayne County also experienced the largest increase in private health insurance regionally at 17.5 percent. Of those with health insurance coverage in Wayne County in 2015, 83.2 percent had private health insurance coverage. For areas like Wayne County, where the percentage of those on private insurance plans has increased, it is likely due to the larger amount of private insurance options the Affordable Health Care Act offers.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, Livingston County experienced the smallest percentage increase in overall health insurance coverage between 2010 and 2015 at 1.4 percent; 93.3 percent of the residents there had coverage in 2015. While Livingston County also had the lowest increase in private health insurance coverage regionally in that time frame, it experienced the largest increase in public health insurance coverage at 28.2 percent.  In 2015, 24.4 percent of those with health insurance coverage in Livingston County had public health insurance coverage; this translates to about 44,800 residents. Majority of those in Livingston County between the ages of 18 and 64 in 2015 with public coverage were not in the labor force (56%); 36 percent of that population was in the labor force and 8 percent was unemployed.




When examining the child population regionally, there was no increase in the percentage of children uninsured in Livingston County. Washtenaw County experienced the largest decrease at 30.6 percent. In 2015 2.5 percent of Washtenaw County’s child population was uninsured; this was equivalent to about 1,700 children. Wayne County, which hosts the city with the largest percentage of uninsured children regionally (Hamtramck) experienced about a 25 percent decrease in the percentage of uninsured children. In 2015 in Wayne County about 16,700 children, or 4 percent of the County’s child population, was without health insurance.PcntChng_Under18_2010-2015_JPEG

In examining this data we see that since the enactment of the Affordable Care Act thousands of residents throughout Southeastern Michigan have been granted more access to health care. According to a New York Times article, those who benefited the most from the Affordable Care Act were those between the ages of 18-34, those living in rural areas and those who are black and Hispanic. In Wayne County, which had the biggest overall percentage increase in insured residents about 25 percent of the population in 2015 was between the ages of 18-34 and about 40 percent of the population was black and about 6 percent of the population was Hispanic. It was also noted in the article that those with lower incomes tended to benefit more from the Affordable Care Act.

Hamtramck has Highest Percentage of Residents, Children Without Health Insurance in Southeastern Michigan

In Michigan, majority of residents have a form of health care coverage, but the kind of coverage often varies. In Southeastern Michigan, the majority of the region has some type of private health care coverage, but there are several municipalities where majority of the residents depend upon public coverage. According to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services there are several publicly funded medical assistance programs offered to residents, depending on their age, income, financial resources and other requirements. Public health insurance programs in Michigan include Medicaid, Healthy Michigan Plan and the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

For this post the percentage of residents covered by health insurance is examined, as is the percentage of residents with private or public insurance plans.


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Throughout Southeastern Michigan health care coverage for residents ranges from 78 to 100 percent, with only about 15 municipalities having 96 percent or more of its residents having coverage, according to the American Community Survey conducted by the Census. Of these 15 municipalities, most are located in Oakland and Washtenaw counties. Overall, in Oakland County 92 percent of residents had health insurance coverage in 2015, and in Washtenaw County 94 percent of the population had coverage. In Oakland County Bloomfield Hills and Lake Angelus had the highest percentage of coverage at 99 percent, and in Washtenaw County, Dexter had the highest rate of coverage at 97 percent. At the opposite end Hamtramck had the lowest percentage of residents with coverage—77 percent. Put differently, 23 percent had no coverage. In Detroit about 17 percent of the population had no health insurance coverage in 2015.

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Regionally, Livingston and Washtenaw counties had the highest percentages of residents on private health insurance at 83 and 82 percent. In Washtenaw County more than half of the municipalities had above 85 percent of its residents on private health insurance. In Wayne County, 58 percent of the residents had private health insurance and only a handful of communities (Grosse Ile, Northville Township and the Grosse Pointes) had more than 85 percent of its residents on private health insurance. On the opposite side of the spectrum, there were five communities in Wayne County where 50 percent or less of the population had private health insurance.

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The map below somewhat mirrors the map above, showing the percentage of residents with public health insurance, as opposed to private. With cities like Detroit, Highland Park and Hamtramck having some of the lowest percentages of private health insurance, it should only make sense that they had among the highest percentages of residents with public health insurance. Highland Park had the highest percentage of residents on public health insurance at 62 percent; Ecorse followed with 60 percent of its residents on public health insurance. Detroit and Hamtramck each had 55 percent of their residents on public health insurance.

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Clearly there is a major divide running through Southeastern Michigan on who gets health insurance and where it comes from. Generally higher income communities have more coverage and a higher proportion comes from the private sector. Lower income communities depend heavily on various public sector programs, and many residents still do not have health care coverage. Clearly these lower income citizens and communities would be severely harmed by proposals to cut public health care programs.

How Immigrants Impact Michigan’s Economy

With about 6.5 percent of Michigan’s population being comprised of foreign-born residents (an increase from 3.8 percent in 1990) their contribution to the economy is evident. From running their own businesses and employing non-foreign born residents to filling in gaps in the work force, a 2016 study by New American Economy shows just how much the immigrant population in the state contributes to the overall economy.

According to the Census Bureau, about 6.5 percent of Michigan’s population is made up of immigrants. Of that population, those that come from Asia make up majority of the foreign-born population at 50.7 percent and those that come from Northern America (Canada, Mexico, Caribbean) made up one of the smallest segments of the population at 5.3 percent (Oceana made up .5 percent).


As shown in the infographic, of Michigan’s immigrant population, 30,086 of them were self-employed in 2014, and 8.3 percent of the immigrant population were entrepreneurs. Additionally, 15,780 Michigan residents were employed by immigrant owned firms and $608.4 billion of income was generated by immigrant businesses, according to the 2016 New American Economy report “The Contributions of New Americans in Michigan.”


Through immigrant population employment, in 2014 there was about $20 billion in income generated and $5.4 million in taxes generated (total-combined federal and state). Asian immigrants contributed the most in income and taxes, according to the report. In 2014 Asian immigrants generated $7.6 billion in income and $2.2 billion in taxes ($574.9 million went to state and local taxes), the Middle Eastern and Northern African population generated $2.8 billion in income and $753.5 million in taxes ($213.1 million went to state and local taxes), the Hispanic population generated $2 billion in income and $473.6 million in taxes ($167.5 million went to state and local taxes) and the Sub-Saharan Africa population generated $548.5 million in income and $139.5 million in taxes ($44.9 million went to state and local taxes), according to the report. Not only did Michigan’s immigrant population contribute to federal and local taxes, but also to entitlement programs. In 2014, Michigan’s immigrant population contributed $507.5 million to Medicare and $1.9 billion to social security.

According to the report, 30 percent of Michigan’s doctors, 9,150 people, were foreign born. Software developers came in second at 28 percent (7,474 workers), followed by farm workers (27%-7,762), post-secondary teachers (22%-12,880), mechanical engineers (22%-10,502), packers and packagers (17%-3,507), computer systems analysts (22%-3,152) and food-service managers (14%-5,310). In total, the percent of immigrant workers employed in a Science, Technology, Engineering and/or Mathematic (STEM) field was 15.3 percent, according to the New American Economy report. The report also points out how there is a shortage of STEM workers in the state, with 10 jobs being available for every one employable worker.

The information presented in this post provides a broad economic overview on the contributions of Michigan’s immigrant population. To learn more about these contributions on everything from how Michigan’s student immigrant population plays a role in the economy to how age plays a factor in economic growth for the foreign-born and non-foreign born populations, please read the whole report here.

Source: http://www.renewoureconomy.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/nae-mi-report.pdf

Auto Parts top Michigan Exports, Imports

In Michigan, parts and accessories related to transportation-particularly those related to automobiles and trucks-were the top 10 commodities both imported and exported between 2012 and 2015, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

In total, the U.S. percent share of commodities Michigan exports is less than the U.S. percent share it imports, however neither have risen above 5.5 percent since 2012, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. In 2015 Michigan exported $25.1 billion worth of transportation equipment, ranging from rear view mirrors to engine ignition spark plugs. In total though, according to the International Trade Administration, Michigan exported $54 million worth of goods in 2015. Canada, a North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partner, received the largest amount of commodities. In 2015 Canada received about $23.5 million worth of goods; this is equivalent to about 44 percent of the goods exported from Michigan. Mexico, also a NAFTA partner, was second to Canada in exports; in 2015 about $11.8 million worth of goods was exported to Mexico. Canada and Mexico were the only two countries who received more than $4 million worth of exports from Michigan in 2015, according to the International Trade Commission.



Of the Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) in Michigan the Detroit-Dearborn-Warren area had the highest dollar value of exports at $44.3 billion, according to the International Trade Administration. That $44.3 billion translated into 68.5 percent of the state’s share of exports. Of the data available, the Lansing-East Lansing MSA had the lowest percent share of exports at 1.3, which was equivalent to $852 million.

Of the six of the seven counties in Southeastern Michigan for which data was available (no data for Washtenaw County), Wayne County had the highest value of goods exported in 2015 at $21.2 billion; Livingston County had the lowest at $570 million.




The U.S. percentage of imports reached a new peak in 2015 at 5.5 percent, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Since 2012, Michigan’s share of U.S. imports has steadily risen from 5.1 percent. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, of the top 10 goods imported into Michigan, crude oil from petroleum is one of only two items on the list that is not directly labeled as a part related to transportation vehicle (transmission, ignition, etc.). The other good listed is seat parts related to medical chairs.

Imports from Canada ranked above all other countries as the leading source of imports to Michigan. In 2015, 36.8 percent of the goods imported into Michigan were from Canada; 35.4 percent of goods imported into the state were from Mexico. The country with the third largest percentage that Michigan imported from was China at 7.4 percent.Slide09


The data presented in this post shows that Michigan’s imports and exports are still heavily linked on the auto industry, and the majority of the goods exported from the state are produced in the most populous region of the state. This region, the Detroit-Dearborn-Warren MSA, is located within miles to Canada and connected via a bridge and a tunnel.

Both in terms of exports and imports, this post also shows that Michigan has the strongest relationships with its NAFTA partners, Canada and Mexico. One of President Donald Trump’s campaign promises has been to re-negotiate the agreement. Both Trump, a Republican, and Democratic U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell agree that NAFTA has harmed workers and factories. Recently, Rep. Dingell and Oregon Congressman Peter DeFazio introduced a resolution seeking a renegotiation of NAFTA to reduce the trade deficit, according to a Feb. 20 Michigan Radio article.

That resolution can be read here.

Fatal Alcohol Related Traffic Accidents Least Common in Northern Michigan

In 2015 it was counties in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan that had the highest amount of traffic accidents and deaths, per capita, from traffic accidents, according to the Michigan of State of Police. Luce County had the highest number of traffic injuries per 10,000 residents at 17.15 (40 total) and Baraga County had the highest number of deaths from traffic crashes per 10,000 residents at 1.17 (1 total). Of these injuries and deaths several were directly related to alcohol, a trend that occurred throughout the state. However, when looking beyond the per capita numbers, we see that it was in Southeastern Michigan where the highest number of traffic related injuries and deaths occurred, both where alcohol was and was not a factor, throughout the state. These high numbers can be, at least in part, attributed to the denser population in that region of the state.

In Wayne County in 2015 there were 191 traffic fatalities, 59, or 31 percent, of which were related to alcohol. Additionally in Wayne County, there were 15,713 total traffic crash related injuries in 2015. Of those injuries, 836, or 5 percent, were related to alcohol being involved in the crash. In Oakland County, of the 67 total traffic fatalities, 18 were related to alcohol (27%) and of the 10,406 traffic injuries 608 (6 %) were related to alcohol. In Macomb County, there were 17 fatal accidents related to alcohol out of 59 total fatal traffic accidents (28%) in 2015. In addition, there were 389 alcohol related traffic injuries in Macomb County; this accounted for 5 percent of the total number of traffic crash related injuries.

Of the fatal traffic accidents throughout Michigan in 2015 there were four counties where alcohol was a factor in 100 percent of the traffic fatalities. These counties were: Mackinac, Baraga, Gogebic (all in the Upper Peninsula) and Mecosta. All three of the Upper Peninsula counties had one traffic fatality, all of which were attributed to alcohol being involved in the crash. Mecosta, in Mid-Michigan in the lower Peninsula, had four fatal traffic accidents in 2015, all of which alcohol played a factor in.

Conversely, there were 31 counties in the state where there were no alcohol related traffic fatalities. However, 28 of those 31 counties had zero total traffic related fatalities. Majority of these counties were located in Northern Michigan. Traffic accident injuries related to alcohol though occurred in every county in 2015, according to the Michigan State Police.





Business Vacancies and Employment Increase in Detroit

  • The unemployment rate across the state has remained stagnant while the rate in the city of Detroit has inched upward(monthly);
  • The number of employed Detroit residents increased, as did the City’s labor force (monthly);
  • The business vacancy rate in Detroit has experienced an overall increase since 2012;
  • The Purchasing Manager’s Index for Southeastern Michigan increased from May to June 2016 (monthly);
  • Commodity Price Index decreased for Southeastern Michigan (monthly);
  • Standard and Poor’s Case-Shiller Home Price Index for the Detroit Metropolitan Statistical Area shows home prices continue to gradually increase on a month-to-month basis and experience larger growth when compared on an annual basis.slide03

According to the most recent data provided by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget, the unemployment rate for the State of Michigan remained steady at 4.5 percent through August 2016. During this same period, unemployment in the City of Detroit increased to 11.5 after hitting an annual low of 9.1 in April.slide05

According to quarterly data provided the U.S. Postal Service, the June 2016 business vacancy rate in the City of Detroit was 25.7 percent, which was equivalent to 7,608 vacant businesses out of 29,648 total businesses. Of the data provided, the lowest business vacancy rate in the City of Detroit was in September of 2012. That rate was 23.3; there were 6,925 vacant addresses of the 29,696 addresses.

The business vacancy rate in the City has steadily grown over the last four years, except between March-December 2015 when it declined. In December of 2015 the rate dropped to a low of 24.3.


In July of 2016 the number of employed Detroit residents rose to 218,587, an increase of 1,054 from June. Between July of 2016 and July of 2015 there was a total increase of 8,117 employed Detroit residents, according to the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget.

Along with the the number of employed Detroit residents increasing over the last year, so has the labor force. Between July of 2016 and July and 2015 the labor force increased by 37,556 to a total of 249,815.


The Purchasing Manger’s Index (PMI) is a composite index derived from five indicators of economic activity: new orders, production, employment, supplier deliveries, and inventories. A PMI above 50 indicates the economy is expanding.

According to the most recent data released on Southeast Michigan’s Manager’s Index, the PMI for August 2016 was 66, an increase of 8.5 points from the prior month. The August 2016 PMI was an increase of 9.4 from the previous year.  With this increase, the PMI for August is considered strong, especially due to the increase in new orders.


The August 2016 Commodity Price Index decreased 9.3 points from July but increased 5 points from the prior year. The July 2016 Commodity Price Index reached an annual high due to pricing pressures and stronger demands at that time. The August decrease represents decreased pressure and demand.


The above charts show the Standard and Poor’s Case-Shiller Home Price Index for the Detroit Metropolitan Statistical Area. The index includes the price for homes that have sold but does not include the price of new home construction, condos, or homes that have been remodeled.

According to the index, the average price of single-family dwellings sold in Metro Detroit was $107,900 in June 2016. This was an increase from $102,710 from June of 2015 and an increase from $97,340 from June of 2014.

Psychiatric Hospital Bed Access Non-Existent in Livingston, St. Clair counties

The number of adult psychiatric beds available in the 1950s (3.4 per 1,000 people) has greatly decreased over the last 60 years in part due to the increased availability of drugs, the poor conditions of early psychiatric hospitals and the shift toward deinstitutionalization, according to Henry Ford Macomb Hospital Medical Director of Quality and Clinical Integration Vikram Eddy. In Southeastern Michigan such a lack of access to licensed adult psychiatric beds exists. According to data from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, access to psychiatric hospital beds in Southeastern Michigan is non-existent in some counties (Livingston and St. Clair counties) and low in others.

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Of the seven counties in Southeastern Michigan, Oakland County had the highest adult psychiatric hospital bed access per 1,000 residents at 0.34. In comparison, as discussed in our last post, hospital bed access in Oakland County was 3.4 per 1,000 residents. In 2016, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, there were 453 licensed psychiatric beds at nine different hospitals in Oakland County; Havenwyck Hospital in Auburn Hills had the most at 153.

In Wayne County there was a total of 317 licensed adult psychiatric hospital beds at eight different hospitals; the psychiatric hospital bed access per 1,000 residents was 0.17. BCA Stonecrest Center in Detroit had the highest number of psychiatric beds in the county at 88.

Macomb and Washtenaw counties also had access near 0.2 adult psychiatric beds per 1,000 residents in 2016. The adult psychiatric hospital bed access in Macomb and Washtenaw counties was 0.23 per 1,000 residents. In total, there were 198 licensed adult psychiatric beds in Macomb County and 81 in Washtenaw County. In our last post Washtenaw County was highlighted for the having the highest number of licensed hospital beds per 1,000 residents at a rate of 4.6. The number of licensed hospitals beds at the University of Michigan Health Systems largely contributed to that rate; there are 1,000 licensed hospital beds at the University of Michigan and 27 licensed adult psychiatric hospital beds.

All of the adult licensed psychiatric beds discussed in this post are housed in private hospitals. Statewide, there are five public health hospitals that cater to those with mental illness; only one of these hospitals is in Southeastern Michigan (Walter B. Reuther). This institution was not included in this post because of the state of Michigan has different licensing requirements and therefore does not list it in its psychiatric hospital bed access document, which is produced by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

Arguments have been made nationally and locally that states such as Michigan should move away from their decentralized and deinstitutionalized mental health approach and increase the number of state run mental health facilities. Currently, community based mental health services are administered through 46 community mental health agencies, all of which have faced state aid cuts and remain independent of one another. In our work in Detroit’s neighborhoods we regularly hear of men and women in dire need of these services. Because of this we see a need for increases in community-based services and hospital-based services, if we are to meet the needs of the state’s citizens.


Oakland County Intersections Takes Top Spots for Total Number of Crashes

The Michigan State Police recently released new traffic data regarding the number of crashes at intersections throughout the state in 2015. In the seven county region, Oakland County had the intersection with the largest amount of crashes at 186. This intersection is at Pontiac Trail and M-5/Martin Parkway in Commerce Township. The intersection in the region with the second highest number of crashes was also in Oakland. This intersection is located in Southfield at 12 Mile Road and Telegraph; there were 132 crashes there in 2015.

For more on this study click here.

Drawing Detroit will be further looking into the total number of crashes at these intersections as relates to traffic flow.

CityLab: Solar Power’s Success Relies on Community Friendly Policies

In a story written by CityLab it was found that in order for solar power to become a more expansive renewable energy source there must be policies in place that allow communities as a whole to reap the benefits, avoid solar mandates and block third party solar panel ownership. In this study Michigan was found to be one of the 10 worst states for solar power growth.

For more on this study click here.