New Hope Redevelops Blighted Properties
Change is underway on the northern edge of New Hope, where lots that have blighted homes are now getting new life.
Tuesday night the city of New Hope voted to purchase the sixth house in the area near 62nd avenue North and Louisiana Avenue North. Getting rid of dilapidated homes has been a priority for the city of New Hope for years. Now, the city is focusing their attention on problem areas with clusters of eye sore homes.
Focusing on 62nd Avenue North
“Right now the momentum in New Hope is on 62nd Avenue,” says Aaron Chirpich, community development specialist for the city of New Hope. “That area is located in the northeast corner of the city on our border with Crystal and Brooklyn Park.”
On Wednesday construction crews were hard at work tearing down one of the six dilapidated homes in that area.
“Revitalization is one of the primary goals,” added Chirpich. “We are really trying to look at some of the areas that have some older homes, and infusing them with some new construction activity. We’ve seen that by doing that it can help stabilize property values and bring the neighborhood up a little bit.”
While making the city a prettier place to live is a priority, increasing the tax base is also a primary focus.
“When you take a lower valued property out and replace it with a high valued home you increase your tax base,” added Chirpich. “Increasing the tax base increases tax revenue for the city. The last 20 projects that we’ve completed have increased the base in New Hope by just over 4-million dollars.”
The Program Operates in Two Different Ways
“The scattered sight housing program consist of two primary activities,” says Chirpich. “Acquisition demolition is the first. That’s where dilapidated and distressed homes are acquired, torn down, and then those lots are resold to builders. The second is acquisition rehabilitation resell. That’s where the city acquires a house, fixes it up, then resells it.”
All of the homes are sold on a volunteer basis. Right now, the city is focusing predominantly on demolition activities. However, both have strong support from community members.
“I know that most of the houses in the neighborhood to bring them up to code would be really expensive,” says Mike Grogan a New Hope resident who lives nearby. “My house I think needs 80-thousand dollars’ worth of work. So, I think it’s a good thing. I know it bring up my property value.”
The program is valuable to New Hopes economic development, and is something the city hopes to continue moving forward.
“Scatter Sight Housing in general will be a priority of the city for years to come,” added Chirpich.
For more information about the Scattered Sight Housing Project call 763-531-5114. You can also visit the city of New Hopes website.