St. Clair Shores, Michigan

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St. Clair Shores is a city and coastal resort community in Macomb County of the U.S. state of Michigan. It forms a part of the Metro Detroit area, and is located approximately 13 miles (21 km) northeast of downtown Detroit. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 63,096. The current mayor is Robert A. Hison (R). It is an 8 Mile City, and is the only 8 Mile City in Macomb County that does not share a border with Detroit.

Contents

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 14.2 square miles (36.9 km²), of which, 11.5 square miles (29.9 km²) of it is land and 2.7 square miles (7.0 km²) of it (19.09%) is water. A notable feature of St. Clair Shores is its 14 miles (22 km) of canals.

History and culture

The area was inhabited by French settlers as early as 1710, at which time it was called L'anse Creuse. (L'anse Creuse was also the name of a stop on the now-defunct interurban railroad off of Jefferson Ave near Nine Mile Road, and the name lives on today in the L'Anse Creuse Public Schools in central Macomb County, MI and L'Anse Creuse High School in Harrison Twp.)

From 1843 until 1911, St. Clair Shores was a part of Erin Township, parts of which make up today's Eastpointe, the Grosse Pointes and St. Clair Shores. In 1911, the township's name changed to Lake Township. Lake Township existed until 2009, when residents of the village of Grosse Pointe Shores (the portion of Grosse Pointe Shores in Macomb County lied within Lake Township) voted to incorporate as a city.

The city once was home to an amusement park named Jefferson Beach. Built in 1927, it featured the longest roller coaster in the United States. In 1955, a fire destroyed several buildings in the park. While Jefferson Beach attempted to rebuild, its owners slowly converted the park to a marina. In 1959, the remaining amusement park buildings were destroyed to make room for the marina.

With help from its location along the shores of Lake Saint Clair, St. Clair Shores grew from a resort community to a suburban city rapidly after World War II. Prior to the city's incorporation in 1951, St. Clair Shores was recognized as the largest village in the United States.

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