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LTU hosts Oct. 24 lecture on creating a transportation hub in Detroit region

Release Date: October 11, 2012

SOUTHFIELD, Mich. –  Wayne State University Associate Professor Michael Belzer will speak on “Transforming the Detroit Region into a Transportation Hub” as he presents the third annual Harold Hotelling Memorial Lecture on Wednesday, Oct. 24, at 7:30 p.m. at Lawrence Technological University, 21000 West Ten Mile Road, Southfield.

The annual lecture, which is free and open to the public, will be held in the Mary E. Marburger Science and Engineering Auditorium in the Science Building.

According to Belzer, it’s no secret that the Detroit region needs a tune-up. His solution is to take advantage of proximity to Canada and access to North America’s only two transcontinental railroads to create an inland port similar to Chicago.

This “Great Lakes Global Freight Gateway” would concentrate intermodal freight transport assets and transform the area into one of America’s pre-eminent transport centers, providing regional business with low-cost and quick access to global markets. Belzer estimates this inland port would generate $11 billion annually in new economic activity, 150,000 new jobs, and more than $1.3 billion in taxes to re-energize state and municipal governments in the region.

An associate professor in economics at Wayne State, Belzer is associate director of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation’s Trucking Industry Program, which focuses on trucking industry operations, regulation, industrial organization, and industrial relations, and directs its Trucking Industry Benchmarking Program.  He is the author of “Sweatshops on Wheels: Winners and Losers in Trucking Deregulation.”

Belzer also chairs the Transportation Research Board Committee on Trucking Industry Research and is a member of the Freight Systems Executive Board, the Committee on Freight Economics and Regulation, and the Bus Safety Committee.

Part of LTU’s College of Arts and Sciences Seminar Series, the annual Hotelling lecture honors the memory of Associate Professor Harold Hotelling, who died in 2009 after teaching at Lawrence Tech for 20 years. He taught courses in business law, business ethics, constitutional law, urban social issues, and law and economics. He is remembered for his keen intellect, tireless devotion, quick wit and wonderful sense of humor.

Lawrence Technological University, www.ltu.edu, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers more than 100 programs through the doctoral level in its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Engineering, and Management. Bloomberg BusinessWeek lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 20 percent of universities for return on undergraduate tuition investment, and highest in the Detroit metropolitan area.  Lawrence Tech is also listed in the top tier of Midwestern universities by U.S. News and World Report and the Princeton Review. Students benefit from small class sizes and experienced faculty who provide a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 102-acre campus include over 60 student clubs and organizations and a growing roster of NAIA varsity sports.