We have several programs in place to maintain and improve the safety of Sherwood Forest. To learn more about any of these, use the sections below.
Sherwood Forest Patrol+
The Board of Directors of the Sherwood Forest Association contracts for the services of a professional security provider. Our patrol drivers use a combination of marked and unmarked vehicles to patrol the neighborhood for a specified number of hours that is determined by our membership level. However, since our current security provider patrols in adjacent neighborhoods as well, a patrol driver is available to respond immediately to an emergency situation in any one of the neighborhoods on a 24-7 basis.
We have found that this service has been effective in keeping crime low in Sherwood Forest.
Please contact Security at 877-218-1394
When compared to private security services in other neighborhoods, the Sherwood Forest Patrol is unique for several reasons.
The neighborhood, through the elected fifteen-member Board of Directors of the Sherwood Forest Association, contracts for the services of a professional security provider. Our driver patrols exclusively in the Sherwood Forest neighborhood.
This unique arrangement gives the greatest possible control to our resident members, while leaving the day-to-day operations to a highly efficient professional security service. We have found that this system works: crime is low in Sherwood Forest.
Among the services the patrol provides to its subscribers are:
- The ability to communicate with the security provider 24 hours a day
- House checks by a patrol officer if you hear a noise or see something suspicious
- Vacation checks of your house several times a day when you are away
- Patrol escort service into the neighborhood if requested in advance
- Traffic control in cooperation with the Detroit Police Department
- Special coverage when needed, as on Angels’ Night or Halloween
Because Sherwood Forest is a Special Assessment District (S.A.D), the patrol is paid for by funds collected by the city in your summer taxes.
12th Precinct Relations+
We continue to maintain a close working relationship between our neighborhood and the Detroit Police Department. We are providing names, responsibilities and phone numbers for some key members of the 12th Precinct.
1441 W. Seven Mile Road (first block west of Woodward)
Commander: Duane Love
Community Relations: Sergeant Shirley Bledsoe (call between 9am and 5pm at (313) 596-1221)
Call 911 directly in the event of an emergency. Do not call the precinct.
Strategic Plan for Unoccupied Homes+
The primary goal of this plan is to attract new homeowners to Sherwood Forest, but a related goal is to protect and maintain our unoccupied homes so they will be attractive to potential home buyers. This strategic action plan requires the active involvement of all residents to achieve these two goals: See a plan to protect vacant properties and a plan to attract new homeowners to Sherwood Forest.
A PLAN TO PROTECT VACANT PROPERTIES
Maintain a continuously updated database of unoccupied homes.
- Determine the name of the owner of the property for inclusion in the database. Use websites, title searches, local realtors and neighbors to obtain and verify this information.
- When a home is represented by a realtor, determine the name of the realtor for inclusion in the database.
Build relationships with city and county official who can help us.
- Department of Buildings and Safety Engineering: Amru Meah, Director; Michael Taylor and Steven Leggat, Chiefs of Enforcement.
- Department of Administrative Hearings.
- Wayne County Nuisance Abatement Program: Michael Russell, Director. For investigation of blighted properties. Under this program, a court awards title to Wayne County as last resort if owner does not maintain property.
- Community Relations officers at Western District Police Precinct.
Engage contractors to mow lawns, rake leaves, shovel snow and clean up around vacant properties.
- We recently applied for a grant from Community Legal Resources, Community and Property Preservation Program (CAPPP) to pay for these services, but did not get it. We should continue to explore grant opportunities.
- In the meantime, we must authorize expenditure from Sherwood Forest Association (SFA) budget or seek neighborhood volunteers.
- Designate a resident to secure, oversee and pay contractors.
Keep homes secure and up to code. If absent owners and/or realtors have been contacted but are refusing to care for properties, we should:
- Report properties to B&SE to investigate for building code violations and to issue correction orders and tickets.
- Where homes are open to trespass, contact Susan McBride of Detroit Historic District Commission. She will contact B&SE directly to have these homes boarded up. A lien will be placed on the property for the cost of boarding up. A resident must be designated to track status of such complaints.
- Report uncut grass and other environmental problems to Western District Community Relations officers for ticketing. Again, someone must track status of complaints.
- Report homes that are open and dangerous to the Wayne County Nuisance Abatement Program for investigation and possible seizure. Track status of complaints.
- Consider boarding up or replacing windows or installing locks at neighborhood expense. Form a small “fix up” team consisting of neighborhood volunteers.
Develop a system of home monitors and designate one person to act as chief monitor.
- A home monitor is a neighbor who is assigned a vacant home near his or her own home. He or she agrees to be the person who cuts and rakes the lawn, shovels the snow, picks up papers and debris and otherwise works to make the house look occupied in the event that we are unable to hire a contractor to do this work. If a contractor is doing the work, the monitor makes sure that the work is being done in a timely manner.
- The home monitor reports to the chief monitor any changes in the condition of the vacant home. This includes deterioration, break-ins, thefts and reoccupations (both legal and illegal).
- The home monitor reports to the chief monitor any new vacancies that occur on the block.
- The chief monitor designs a procedure whereby all residents are encouraged to report to her/him any new vacancies or changes in the status of vacant properties.
Encourage residents to use our new email address to report on vacant homes, email@example.com.
NOTE: We recognize that many of our residents already have assumed informally the role of home monitor. We must formalize the process to make sure that every home is covered and that the SFA is getting up-to-date information on the status of our vacant homes.
Use our private patrol service to assist us in monitoring vacant homes.
- Make sure the drivers have a current list of vacant homes and give priority attention to those homes as they make their rounds.
- Ask drivers to report to the police and the chief monitor any suspicious activities at vacant homes and report to the chief monitor any change in status at vacant homes.
A plan to attract new homeowners to Sherwood Forest
- Work with area realtors to market the neighborhood effectively, and make realtors aware of our property restrictions and historic district requirements
- Distribute our Sherwood Forest brochure to realtors, social media outlets, such as Model D, and other organizations that promote Detroit living.
- Use our website, www.sherwoodforestdetroit.org, to promote our community. Consider creating a special section on the website featuring homes for sale and explaining the tax advantages of living in a NEZ.
- Seek earned media stories, as with January 2009 feature in Model D and the many 2014 stories in print media, radio and television about our “Light the Way” cmpaign for new streetlights.
- Promote our community through paid advertising.
- Participate in home tours with other neighborhoods and sponsoring organizations (as with Crain’s annual “Living in the D” and the 2008 LGBT Friends Home Tour).
- Enlist every resident to be an ambassador for Sherwood Forest
We Need Your Help+
We have a lot of work to do in addressing the vacant home problem in Sherwood Forest. We are a “can do” community and are bound to succeed IF each of us does his or her part. Our Strategic Action Plan for Unoccupied Homes in Sherwood Forest requires the work of dedicated volunteers. Listed below are some of the jobs that need to be filled. Please look at this list and then sign up for at least one of these projects. Please fill out the on-line volunteer form. Together we can, and will, maintain our beautiful community.
- Vacant Home Committee: The Board of Directors of the Sherwood Forest Association is forming a new Vacant Home Committee. We need several residents to serve on this committee.
- Home Monitors: A home monitor is a neighbor who is assigned to watch a vacant home near his or her home and try to keep the home from looking vacant. This may include mowing and raking the law, shoveling snow, picking up papers and debris or notifying the Chief Monitor that a contractor is needed to do some of these tasks. If you have a vacant home on your block, please volunteer to be a home monitor!
- Chief Monitor: The chief monitor will coordinate the work of home monitors, take their reports on the status of vacant homes and arrange for maintenance work as needed.
- Home Maintenance Group: We need to form a group of residents who are handy with tools to do minor repairs to the exteriors of vacant homes.
- Public Relations and Marketing: Just as important as maintaining our homes is seeing them reoccupied. We need a group of residents with skills in these areas to promote our community and help attract potential buyers.
- Lawyers: We need a small group of lawyers to deal with the occasional problems that arise concerning banks, mortgage companies, realtors, unauthorized occupancies, etc.
If you would like to volunteer in an area unrelated to vacant homes, consider the following:
- Block Captains: We are creating a network of block captains for every block in Sherwood Forest.
- Meet and Greet: Hold a neighborhood social gathering in your home. If you will provide the place, your neighbors will do the rest. We would like to have a Meet and Greet sometime this spring.
- Board of Directors: To serve on the board, you must be willing to chair one of our standing committees and be available to attend a meeting on the second Monday of each month