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State wins funds to rebuild site of historic black communities

State wins funds to rebuild site of historic black communities
State wins funds to rebuild site of historic black communities 01:42

(CBS DETROIT) - The state of Michigan has been awarded $104.6 million to tear down I-375 in downtown Detroit, which is the location of once thriving black communities. 

On Thursday, in downtown Detroit, federal, state and local officials made several announcements regarding the program referred to as Reconnecting Communities. The program is part of a bipartisan infrastructure package that passed earlier this year. 

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg announced the award in during a news conference this morning in downtown Detroit near the site of the proposed plan. 

"Sometimes fixing the damn roads means facing the repercussions of how the roads were originally built, who was included in that process and who was not," Buttigieg explained. 

In 1964, the I-375 corridor was built by ripping through two historically black communities - called Black Bottom and Paradise Valley. 

"This is a day the Detroit community has been waiting for, for a long time," said Mike Duggan while a crowd of supporters clapped.

Duggan said he and Governor Gretchen Whitmer began to lobby the project once Buttigieg become the Transportation Secretary. Duggan also said the funding will be able to reconnect the city in ways that hasn't been done in more than 70 years. 

"The motivations behind wiping out Black Bottom and Paradise Valley are well known... it's time to fill in the ditch (I-375), it's time to reknit this community," Duggan exclaimed. 

Originally the project was slated to begin in 2027 and completed in 2029, but officials said they've been able to move the start date up by two year to 2025. 

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