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Court Restores 'Doors and Windows' Code Enforcement Ordinance in Philadelphia

One of Philadelphia's most potent code enforcement tools is back in effect after the state Supreme Court overturned a previous ruling by a lower court.
September 29, 2018, 7am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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"Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court has given Philadelphia back its favorite blight-fighting tool," reports Jake Blumgart.

That is, by restoring the "Door's and Windows" ordinance, "state justices unanimously reaffirmed the city’s ability to force property owners to maintain the appearances of their vacant buildings."

"The regulation intends to serve as a hedge against creeping neighborhood blight. It requires owners on blocks where 80 percent of buildings are occupied to install operable windows and doors on empty structures, instead of just boarding them up," according to Blumgart.

While city officials view the policy as a tool for stopping the "cycle of disinvestment," also known as blight, the dispute over the ordinance began when a property owner pushed back on numerous violations.

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