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Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan announced a new housing strategy, called Planning to Grow Akron 2.0, this week, reports Doug Livingston.
"Planning to Grow Akron 2.0 — an update on the first version from 2017 — promises a lot: better housing code enforcement, stiffer fines for absentee landlords, smoother zoning and permitting processes, a landlord-tenant council, a comprehensive strategy for homelessness by 2022, and a ranking by condition of all 84,000 residential structures in the city."
"Central to the plan, though, is a commitment to revitalize housing in what post-industrial, Midwestern cities like Akron are calling 'middle neighborhoods,'" adds Livingston.
Mayor Horrigan is proposing an expenditure of $20 million, a portion of the $153 million awarded the city through the American Rescue Act, to go toward housing in the city.
According to the article, the Planning to Grow Akron 2.0 plan is the second major housing initiative proposed by Mayor Horrigan. The first Planning to Grow Akron plan "exempted property taxes for new residential construction anywhere in the city for 15 years. Developers have since pounced on these residential tax abatements, which couldn’t be more aggressively structured under Ohio law."
According to an analysis included in this week's updated housing strategy, the effect of the first Planning to Grow Akron plan has been tremendous: "Before Horrigan took office, Akron was averaging less than 20 new home permits a year. There are now 1,800 housing units being planned, under construction or completed."