Detroit’s TechTown Expands to Three New Neighborhoods


An $800,000 grant will allow TechTown Detroit to increase its offerings in three new neighborhoods: the East Jefferson Corridor, Grandmont Rosedale, and Osborn. The business incubator and accelerator said Wednesday the funds would help retain 530 jobs, create 40 new positions, and add a minimum of 10 new businesses.

“There’s a lot of economic development activity happening in Midtown and downtown, but that also needs to happen in the neighborhoods in order to see a fully revitalized Detroit,” Leslie Smith, president and CEO of TechTown, said in a statement.

The three-year grant — provided by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for Community Economic Development — supports SWOT City Detroit, which delivers TechTown acceleration services to underserved neighborhoods through partnerships with community and economic development organizations.

SWOT City Detroit also provides business assistance, entrepreneurial services, and training to businesses, residents, and other stakeholders in neighborhoods through a three-pronged expansion. The team’s first plan of action will be to assess the community and its businesses, along with identifying strengths, weakness, opportunity, and threats (or SWOT). Next, the team will provide assistance and look to adopt sustainable practices.

Over the duration of the grant, the SWOT team hopes to encourage entrepreneurship in low-income neighborhoods, ensure the positive changes made are sustained beyond the grant’s time period, and raise awareness of the opportunities present in targeted areas for the creation and expansion of businesses.