Oakland Avenue was once a vibrant commercial artery in Detroit's North End neighborhood, but the Detroit Rebellion in 1967 and its aftermath triggered a serious downward spiral.
Today, the street is full of empty lots and abandoned buildings, with a smattering of businesses, including a shoe shine joint, a liquor store, a car repair shop, an ice cream parlor and The Schvitz, a 1930 bathhouse that has seen a revival in recent years with a change in ownership. (It's closed because of the pandemic.)
There also are churches, some bright art and the Oakland Avenue Urban Farm, which operates a Saturday market from June to September.
Detroit photographer Norbert Daniel Jr. checked out the street recently.
Photos by Norbert Daniel Jr.
Powerful art on Oakland Avenue
One of many churches (Photo: Deadline Detroit)
Another church -- this one with a message about community
A sign of commerce on a once-vibrant street.
The Shvitz, a bathhouse established in 1930 (Photo: Allan Lengel)
A mural about the North End
A shoe shine place with colorful art.
The side of the Red Jazz Shoe Shine shop (Photo: Allan Lengel)
A little art goes a long way on a street that needs brightening.
Missing: "Jake the Cat"
Worn storefronts are typical on Oakland Avenue.
Some residential upgrades
An artsy place to hang
A building in need of help
Miss Virginia's Ice Cream Parlor
A message: "If It's All Broken Out We Can Work It Out"
A sign of democracy
Oakland Avenue garden
More art on Oakland Avenue