Detroit doesn’t get much respect these days. It has seen hard times over the last fifty years. One hundred years ago, it was the 4th largest city in the United States after New York, Chicago, and Philadelphia. While the city’s population has decreased to the 27th most populous, metro Detroit boasts 4.3 million people making it the 14th largest metropolitan area. However, this clean and modern airport belies none of its apparent woes. Much of a person’s first impression of a city is from the airport.
I had an uncomfortably short less-than-an-hour layover before my next flight to New York. I prefer at least an hour between flights. Fortunately, the gate was next door. Thus, I didn’t venture very far to document Detroit Metropolitan Wayne Country Airport. This long name makes it sound like some podunk regional airport. Not so. The airport boasts 30 international flights and services to most of the United States. Perhaps Detroit has a confidence problem.
Any other city would proudly call this Detroit International Airport. I remember when Austin’s current airport, Austin-Bergstrom, declared its international status. We laughed. It had only one daily flight to Mexico. If anything, I think Austin may be over-confident. It proudly markets itself as the Live Music Capital of the World, whether true or not. However, as any politician and capitalist know, marketing spin works.
I was impressed with Detroit’s airport, though I only got to experience it for half an hour. It has wide hallways and lacks the clutter of Austin’s smaller one. You might have noticed a pattern of me ragging on Austin-Bergstrom. I only do so because it’s well-deserved.
I’m not a coffee drinker, but I was also attracted to this glowing Starbucks. Its generous proportions and organic artwork were a welcoming beacon even for the non-Java addicted.
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