The once vibrant and beautiful town of Detroit has been reduced to a ghost town. The Beachie Creek and Lion’s Head wildfires merged in the city’s center, decimating much of the landscape, homes, and businesses. The heart of Detroit, the city hall, was also lost.
Nick Harville, Business Retention & Expansion Manager for SEDCOR/Marion County, and Rich Duncan, owner of Duncan Construction, formed the Santiam Rebuild Coalition. It was developed for multiple purposes. One is to provide Canyon residents a group of trustworthy, local construction trades. Also, to improve logistics as reconstruction begins. In addition, the Coalition brings together construction industry members who will volunteer their time to fast-track the construction of a new community building in Detroit—doing more together towards this goal than they could individually. They view Detroit as a significant economic driver for surrounding cities.
At an organization meeting in mid-October 2020, over 90 contractors pledged to provide labor and materials. In late January, the coalition secured a piece of virtually untouched land to build the community building.
The Detroit Lake Foundation, a 501(c)3, will accept donations of both funds and materials on behalf of the project at DetroitLakeFoundation.org. The Coalition has created its own website SantiamRebuildCoalition.org to help the contributors communicate and coordinate schedules. Approved licensed contractors will have access to a discussion forum and be listed in a public directory.
The project brings together many of the partners involved in the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition build, led by Duncan in 2010. Thousands of citizens gathered to revitalize the Oregon School for the Deaf’s Nightmare Factory and boy’s dormitory.
Duncan said citizens are overwhelmed by the outpouring of support by the industry. “It is great to have a relationship with trusted colleagues we can call back together a decade later to work on this important rebuild,” said Duncan.
About the Santiam Rebuild Coalition: After fires devastated the Santiam Canyon, generous members of the building community pledged to help. The Santiam Rebuild Coalition is a group of licensed and insured construction industry members who have committed materials and labor to fast-track a community building for Detroit.