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Downsizing Flint 'Gracefully'

<p>Flint, Michigan has adopted a new strategy to deal with shrinkage and blight: tear down abandoned properties and sell the plots to nearby neighbors for a dollar.</p>
November 12, 2007, 2pm PST | Michael Dudley
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"Abandoned homes are a big problem in Flint, Mich., a former manufacturing stronghold that is losing jobs and residents."

"In some neighborhoods five or more houses in a row are boarded up, as one owner after another packs up and leaves. Once they have sat vacant too long bulldozers come to demolish them."

"But the county is stepping in and taking control of the city's tax-foreclosed properties, selling plots to neighbors for a dollar or paying churches to maintain them."

"The Genesee County Land Bank is demolishing the abandoned homes in an attempt to end decay and help Flint downsize gracefully."

"The lots are sold to the neighbor for a dollar, or turned into parks."

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Published on Tuesday, October 30, 2007 in NPR

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