OCT 20, 2015 – I spent three nights in Detroit, which is often called the “Motor City” or simply “Motown”. This poorest city of the US was interesting in many ways: Its downtown has a few spectacular buildings like the Renaissance Center, which is General Motors’ global headquarters. The city has one of North America’s largest theater districts and a remarkable nightlife. And because the crisis has taken away many jobs, there are probably more grassroots movements, citizen initiatives, and alternative life approaches than in any other American city. I went to visit a few interesting places by bike: The Heidelberg project, a big art installation around abandoned and destroyed houses; the Universe Building, a community center, home and guesthouse in a poor neighborhood, and the Golden Gate project, which occupies, renovates and decorates a number of abandoned houses and runs alternative businesses such as a bike shop. One of the biggest issues for me as a visitor was how to get around – it might have been worthwhile to rent a car, but instead I used the infrequent buses, a rental bike, and Uber cars. It was my first time using Uber, and I was somehow forced into it because I went to a CouchSurfing potluck one evening, and suddenly realized it was 50km away without any public transit option to get there. The quality of service convinced me, and while I do still have some doubts about the ethics of Uber’s business model, I chatted with my drivers about it and got the impression that they get paid enough to be able to work full-time for Uber.