Fenkell Avenue. Five Mile Road. The Fenkell Strip.
I’ve never resided on a westside street a day in my life, but I do have a history with it. As oxymoronic (if that’s a word) as it sounds, I practically grew up on the westside though I never lived anywhere on it. I had family around these parts, I’ve worked in these parts, even went to school on the westside, ect.
I was on this strip yesterday, and nothing but memories came to mind of how beautiful this particular area once was (this was in the early 1980s). Now I look at it and I thought my hood was terrible. Gratiot and Harper pales in comparison to this!
No disrespect to the residents on the strip-past and present.
Brief history about this iconic strip. Fenkell was named after George Fenkell, who was Commissioner of Public Works and longtime Superindent and General Manager of Department of Water Supply from 1919 to 1938. He was one of many who contributed to the infrastructure development of Detroit in the early 1900s.
This city’s got a lot of history!
Now with Detroit making a gradual comeback, I wouldn’t be surprised if, within the next ten years or more, this urban blight may never be restored to its former glory, but will rise from the ashes and become something better than the past and present.