September 24, 2013 [Kelsey Leyva, WKSU]
East Cleveland and Cleveland Heights are spending $1.1 million to remove blight in the North Coventry community.
The two cities teamed up with the Cuyahoga County Land Bank to demolish five vacant apartment buildings. The goal is to decrease crime, improve property rates and encourage new investment in the area.
The demolition begins Wednesday.
Cheryl Stevens is the director of acquisition, disposition and development for the land bank. She believes that removing the blight will have long-term benefits for the community.
“We’re hoping that property values will raise where people have continued to invest and kept their properties in good condition, and then we are hoping that new investment will take place. We’ll encourage developers to take a look at these properties and do new construction on them.”
Stevens says that approximately 60 more demolitions will be necessary to complete the neighborhood’s first step toward recovery.
The project is funded by the state’s Moving Ohio Forward Demolition Grant Program.