Detroit Blight Removal Task Force: Removing blight will cost $85

Detroit Blight Removal Task Force: Removing blight will cost $850M

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DETROIT (WJBK) - The Detroit Blight Removal Task Force shared details of a new blight removal plan Tuesday. Local business people and politicians came together Tuesday to release the findings of research and data collection.

After month of high-tech mapping more than 85,000 homes, vacant lots and no-residential structures have been identified as blighted. The Detroit Blight Removal Task Force estimates it will cost $850 million to get rid of the abandoned homes and small commercial buildings, and even more for large commercial buildings, warehouses and schools.

Right now, it's believed more than $450 million of that $850 million is funded.

"I believe we need to find another $800 million to a billion dollars to get the blight completely out of this city, but we're going to go to work on it every day," says Mayor Mike Duggan.

In the meantime, demolition is underway using federal hardest hit funds to demolish city-owned homes in six of the city's neighborhoods, which is welcome news for the residents and for Detroit firefighters who so often find themselves at abandoned homes and buildings.

"You never know what you're walking into. The roof could cave in just by opening the front door, and that's a dangerous situation," says Sgt. Jim Nadolski of Detroit Fire Department's Engine 57.

"We're demolishing 300 houses in the month of May. We'll be between [400] and 500 in June; we'll be up to 800 by fall. It'll be triple the rate that the city's seen, but we're only demolishing those homes that can't be saved," says Duggan.

Online: www.motorcitymapping.org
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