Excerpt from For the Love of Cities – page 163-164
Co-creators are starters. Starters are the first ones in the pool, the first ones on the dance floor and the catalysts that literally make things happen. Claire Nelson is the co-founder of Open City, a forum for aspiring and existing small business owners in Detroit, and a drafter of the Detroit Declaration. She launched one of the first new retail businesses in her Midtown neighborhood when she opened the Bureau of Urban Living, a small design store similar to Crate Barrel, in the Canfield Lofts Building. Not only did she start her own business– she actively recruited friends and colleagues to start other businesses in the area as well. When a space became vacant next to her shop, she explains, “I begged everyone I knew to open something there.” Her efforts paid off. A design company called City Bird opened next door, and Claire has called it “my greatest achievement so far” because she gained a neighbor and someone who shares the same love of place.