Detroit Has to Demolish Before it Can Rebuild

In its heyday, nearly 2 million people lived here in Detroit; now, it's fewer than half that. The city is so huge that San Francisco and Boston could fit within its borders with room left for Manhattan. But a third of Detroit is too scarcely populated to function. Now, more than 10,000 buildlings could be demolished.

Demographer Kurt Metzger envisions small urban villages connected by parks and bike paths. 

"We could become the greenest city in the country because of the land that we have if we start to manage it correctly," he said. 

The details are a work in progress. But the direction is clear: this once-great city must shrink before it can thrive again.