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Blight elimination program enters final year

In 2018, the city is planning on tearing down 44 abandoned properties including 11 homes across the city this summer.

Posted: May 10, 2018 10:16 PM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) The city of Fort Wayne is schedued to tear down about a dozen homes in the next month.

This is the final year for the statewide blight elimination program.

Homes scheduled to be torn down in the next month:

455 Violet Court
615 Watkins Street
2730 Weisser Park Avenue
629 West Dewald Street
1426 Michigan Avenue
624 Cherry Street
1508 Fletcher Avenue
915 East Lewis Street
1706 Maumee Avenue
712 East Lewis Street
2432 Lillie Street

"I'm very excited, excited just for it to be gone," said Samantha Slatton, who lives in the Nebraska neighborhood.

In 2018, the city is planning on tearing down 44 abandoned properties including 11 homes across the city this summer.

Since 2015, the city has gotten $7.6 million to tear downs homes like these to bring new life in the neighborhoods.

The first house to go was 615 Watkins Street in the Nebraska neighborhood just west of downtown.

A sight Slatton liked to see.

"It looked pretty bad. It was kind of an eye sore of our block so it's pretty exciting for it to not be there anymore," said Slatton.

The city said these homes have to go because they're so unsafe, they cannot be fixed.

"A lot of these homes have been dragging down the neighborhoods. Nobody wants to an abandoned and vacant home," said Community Development spokeswoman Mary Tyndall.

Many of these lots are deeded to the neighborhood associations, who then turn the lot into a pocket park for everyone to enjoy.

Momper Insulation president Matt Momper is working with several businesses on West Main Street to help make that happen on Watkins.

"Trail, landscape things for some children, things for the young millennial which are in our neighborhood," he said.

"There is a bunch of kids so I'm pretty sure it's going to get a lot of use," said Slatton.

Even though the state program is going away, the city will continue to tear down blighted homes through neighborhood code enforcement.

It just won't be as many.

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