Detroit fights blight 1 neighbourhood at a time by seizing, selling or razing derelict homes

DETROIT – Mayor Mike Duggan’s plan for fixing Detroit neighbourhoods includes selling some vacant houses while razing others too far gone to save.

The Detroit Land Bank Authority is adding more neighbourhoods to an online auction of empty houses.

Duggan tells The Associated Press that about 50 houses have been sold since the auctions kicked off in May.

The number of homes auctioned each day is expected to grow from two to three in the coming weeks. The city is seeking people who want to fix them and move in.

That strategy, if successful, is expected to help eradicate blight and strengthen neighbourhoods.

A recent study recommended razing more than 38,000 houses. Another 35,000 are at-risk of becoming blighted. About 5,500 of those are owned by the city or the Land Bank.