Group brightens up vacant buildings, homes with paper hearts - WNEM TV 5

Group brightens up vacant buildings, homes with paper hearts

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

Paper hearts with messages of love adorned several historical buildings in Mid-Michigan.

The hearts were put there by the Young Preservationists of the Great Lakes Bay Region. They said they are trying to save the vacant buildings by doing what they call heart bombing.

"We just kind of want to share some knowledge and shed some light on these homes because there's a lot of vacant properties that need an extra hand and some love," said Justis Heppner, member of the Younger Preservationists.

The group did their best to spread the love over the weekend by placing hearts on 13 commercial and residential properties in Bay City and Saginaw. It was in an effort to draw developers to them.

"Economically it's smarter to reinvest money into already existing properties as opposed to tearing down and building new ones," Heppner said.

Attorney Kristi Kozubal also took part. She said the hearts reflect what a house might say to get a little love.

"Love me, love my lot. Or paint me. Paint equals love. Talk structural to me. I love that one," Kozubal said.

She said the group put hundreds of hearts on the various buildings, brightening them up and raising awareness at the same time.

"It's inspiring to be involved in something that is positive and shedding light on one of our community's greatest assets," Kozubal said.

Developer Jenifer Acosta believes the community needs to save the hidden treasures before it's too late.

"We went and peeked in every single window and the kind of features and the craftsmanship that these homes were built with, you can't replicate. You can't replace," Acosta said.

That's why they are looking for people to put some money behind the symbols of love.

"We want to try and scout out some investors to scoop these properties up and try to transform the neighborhoods," Heppner said.

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