New task force working to fight Detroit blight - Boston News, Weather, Sports | FOX 25 | MyFoxBoston

New task force working to fight Detroit blight, counting exact number of abandoned buildings

Posted: Updated:
(WJBK) -

In a city full of abandoned houses and vacant commercial buildings, a new task force is working to fight blight in Detroit.

Groups of surveyors are going to Detroit neighborhoods to count exactly how many buildings are blighted and abandoned.

VIDEO: Click on the video player above to watch the story in a report from Fox 2's Amy Lange, or read the story below
________

Motor City Mapping - the magnets are going on the cars, the surveyors are in training and teams are getting ready to hit the streets. Their goal is to count Detroit's tens of thousands of burned out, abandoned buildings.

"We know that there's a lot of blighted properties around the city but we don't know - is that 50,000? Is that 70,000? No one's ever gone and counted this and so that's what this project aims to do," explains Sean Jackson, an executive associate at Rock Ventures.

"I'm able to see exactly what we're impacting and actually having a position that I can be impactful in - so I think it's great," says Kevin Irwin II, a surveyor from Quicken Loans.

Surveyors, like Irwin, are all Detroit residents. 75 teams of three will spread out throughout the city in search of blight. They won't have to go far as it's clearly one of Detroit's biggest problems.

"The elimination of blight is essential to the revitalization of the city. We will not be able to look at our neighborhoods and see them as strong and vital if they continue to be blighted," says Dr. Glenda Price. She is one of the co-chairs of the Detroit Blight Removal Task Force along with U-SNAP-BAC nonprofit housing executive director, Linda Smith, and Dan Gilbert, chairman and founder of Quicken Loans and Rock Ventures.

Dr. Price continues, "We want to stabilize neighborhoods. We want to make them attractive for people to move into and for people to stay."

And that effort has support from many community groups all the way to the U.S. government, and so many businesses in between. The surveyors will be using Android tablets to capture photos and information about blighted residential and commercial properties. And, starting now, they'll be hard at work building that database in a neighborhood near you.

The surveyors hope to have the mapping done by the end of January. Then those numbers will be used to formulate a plan. Moving forward, the Blight Task Force hopes to have the blight eradicated in three years.

  • Amy LangeMore from Amy LangeMore>>

  • New lawyer comes aboard in Bashara case

    New lawyer comes aboard in Bashara case

    Tuesday, April 15 2014 6:33 PM EDT2014-04-15 22:33:50 GMT
    A man charged with arranging the murder of his wife at their suburban Detroit home has a new lawyer.
    A man charged with arranging the murder of his wife at their suburban Detroit home has a new lawyer.
  • Mary Barra speaks with industry insiders ahead of NY auto show

    Mary Barra speaks with industry insiders ahead of NY auto show

    Tuesday, April 15 2014 5:39 PM EDT2014-04-15 21:39:46 GMT
    General Motors CEO Mary Barra spoke with industry insiders this week ahead of the auto show in New York.
    General Motors CEO Mary Barra spoke with industry insiders this week ahead of the auto show in New York.
  • Utash talking more, confused after awaking from coma

    Utash talking more, confused after awaking from coma

    Monday, April 14 2014 5:17 PM EDT2014-04-14 21:17:50 GMT
    Steven Utash, the suburban Detroit motorist brutally beaten after he stopped to help a boy he accidentally hit with his pickup truck, continues his lengthy recovery after waking from a coma on Friday. Utash had been in a medically induced coma for days following the April 2 incident on Detroit's east side.His son, Joseph Utash, tells FOX 2's Amy Lange his father has moments of clarity, along with moments of confusion. Joseph says his father is confused about where he works, among other things...
    Steven Utash, the suburban Detroit motorist brutally beaten after he stopped to help a boy he accidentally hit with his pickup truck, continues his lengthy recovery after waking from a coma on Friday. Utash had been in a medically induced coma for days following the April 2 incident on Detroit's east side.His son, Joseph Utash, tells FOX 2's Amy Lange his father has moments of clarity, along with moments of confusion. Joseph says his father is confused about where he works, among other things...
  • Download the FOX 2 Apps


  • FOX 2 News Five-Day Forecast
Powered by WorldNow

25 FOX Drive
Dedham, MA 02026

Phone (781) 467-2525

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices