Thousands of homes being torn down to rid Flint community of bli - WNEM TV 5

Thousands of homes being torn down to rid Flint community of blight

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FLINT, MI (WNEM) -

Crews in Genesee County are making progress in tearing down thousands of blighted properties.

The demolitions are funded by the Hardest Hit fund, the federal money awarded to the county in 2014.

By tearing down the abandoned homes, it allows for new growth and safer communities.

“We have about 3,000 properties that were blighted and that have been torn down and about 2,000 more to go,” said Christina Kelly, director of planning and neighborhood revitalization at the Genesee County Land Bank.

Kelly said Flint is going to start looking even better over the next 18 months thanks to a $67.5 million grant from the Hardest Hit Fund.

The money has helped tear down at least 3,000 homes so far and more will be coming down.

“I think it goes along way to help stabilize existing neighborhoods,” Kelly said. “Where residents are maintaining the property, caring for their property and they really want to see the blight just gone, so they can continue to invest in their own property."

Shaquita Spencer lives off of Ballenger Highway where many homes have been torn down but says a lot more need to go.

“A lot of properties in my neighborhood are affected, people are breaking the windows, people are raping people in those houses,” Spence said.

Kelly said she is happy with the progress the city is making to fight back against blight.

She adds the Land Bank will continue their efforts to make a safe and inviting environment for people to live in.

“We’re hoping were able to finish taking down all these homes by the winter of 2019,” Kelly said.

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