Another recent article from the University of Washington (Tight Squeeze) discusses how dense urban areas may actually be better for wildlife biodiversity than suburban sprawl, yet cuts down on people's interactions with nature and the outdoors. A truly interesting dichotomy.
The following information comes from a recent article in The Cleveland Plains Dealer and email correspondence with the City of Cleveland Planning Commission.
- Cleveland currently has 8,500 houses ready to be demolished, with that number expected to rise to 13,500 houses over the next 5 years
- Including those current houses, Cleveland has an estimated 20,000 vacant lots/properties in the city
- It will take an estimated $4.5 billion over 22 years to demolish all of the houses that need razed
- Cleveland is currently interested in the redevelopment of those lots into Urban Gardens/Agriculture, renewable energy development (solar and wind), and wastewater/stormwater management, as well as similar environmental services
- Youngstown currently has 23,000 vacant lots
- At an average of .16 acre/lot, there is an estimated total of 3,680 acres of vacant property
- Youngstown has 21,696 acres of land in the city, so almost 17% of their land is vacant
- Of these properties, there are approximately 6,000 vacant structures (mixture of both commercial and residential)
- Much like Cleveland, Youngstown is interested in urban gardens and agriculture, Side Yard projects (where a neighboring land owner can buy a vacant lot for around $200), and creating public use spaces such as parks.