There are a number of unconventional ideas I can think of to bring people back - here are a couple:
- We have become a low cost area - people live on less in Detroit than any other big city in America (http://detnews.com/article/20100324/BIZ/3240322/1001/Study-puts-Detroiters-at-bottom-of-nation-s-spenders) - we should promote this to attract businesses and people back, as you don't need to pay/earn to much to thrive in Detroit
- We could give away houses or land (or vacant office space) for free as incentives for people (or business to give to employees) relocating to Detroit - such land allocation is how the country awarded settlers during the 1800s (begging the pardon of the Native Americans), so I imagine that this tradition could work in Detroit as well - instead of sitting on ever increasing amounts of real estate or selling property for peanuts at auction, we can use these resources as tools to incent people to move to Detroit
- We could work out a deal with the US immigration department to fast track visas and green cards for people moving to the city
What do you think?