Kansas City Puts Down Payment on Clearing Blight

Joining a host of other Midwestern cities establishing land banks to help corral, clear, and repurpose their vacant properties, Kansas City will begin transferring 3,500 vacant properties it recently acquired into a city-owned land bank.

Already responsible for more than $1.5 million in yearly upkeep costs for the properties that were formerly owned by the financially strapped Jackson County Land Trust, Kansas City began acquiring 3,500 vacant properties this month as the "latest step in a plan to restore blighted communities in the city's core," reports Sarah Fentem.

"David Park of the Kansas City Planning Department said the transfer not only provides more funds, but also offers the city 'more flexibility and authority' when dealing with the vacant properties. For example, unlike the Jackson County Land Trust, the city has the ability to give properties away or combine two smaller properties to make the land more marketable," notes Fentem.

"[Park] said he hopes such initiatives will attract younger people to Kansas City. 'The idea of moving into a neighborhood that needs revitalization-to be part of that movement- is attractive,' said Park. New residents could help reduce blight by encouraging positive redevelopment. 'I don't think we can cause it, but I think we can facilitate it.'"

Full Story: Take it to the Bank

Comments

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $199
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $14.95 a month
Book cover of Contemporary Debates in Urban Planning

Contemporary Debates in Urban Planning

Featuring thought-provoking commentary and insights from some of the leading thinkers and practitioners in the field.
$18.95
DVD Cover of The Story of Sprawl

The Story of Sprawl

See how America changed shape in this collection of historic films that visually document how sprawl evolved.
$29.99 for 2-DVD SET