Community Progress Blog

An Unprecedented Opportunity for COVID Relief and Equitable Neighborhood Transformation

Written by on April 29, 2021

While the US is gaining ground in its fight against COVID-19, many communities are facing growing threats to neighborhood stability from its economic fallout. Unprecedented help is on the horizon for these communities, which could provide a momentous opportunity to spur equitable revitalization.   Where we are today  While the national unemployment rate has been dropping, [1] it belies two deeply concerning trends for…


New Report: Michigan Vacant Home Rates Down, But Rural and Urban Counties Suffer (Press Release)

Written by on August 25, 2020

State of Vacancy in Michigan 2020 Update Shares Residential Vacancy and Distressed Property Trends Download: News Release (PDF) FLINT, M.I. – August 25, 2020 – Today, the Center for Community Progress, America’s leading resource on issues of vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated (VAD) properties, shared the State of Vacancy in Michigan 2020 Update, a joint analysis with Data…


Preventing Post-COVID-19 Vacancy: 6 Interventions Local Governments Should be Thinking About Now

Written by on April 20, 2020

We are still many months away from fully understanding the public health and economic fallout from COVID-19. However, history can provide some foresight into how this crisis may impact community stability and what actions local governments could examine now to mitigate these impacts. Discriminatory and unjust policies have exposed individuals and their communities to a…


Treasury announces final allocation of $1B in Hardest Hit Funds

Written by on April 20, 2016

Thirteen of the 19 participating Hardest Hit Fund states will receive additional dollars allocated through a competitive application process that required state Housing Finance Agencies (HFAs) to demonstrate an ongoing need for additional funding to prevent foreclosure and stabilize markets. According to Treasury, states receiving additional funds under the final allocation submitted reasonable plans of…


Treasury announces how $2 billion for Hardest Hit Fund will be allocated

Written by on February 19, 2016

  Today, Treasury announced how it will allocate the additional $2 billion dollars for the Hardest Hit Fund (HHF) program approved by Congress last December. HHF funding will be allocated among participating States in two phases of $1 billion each. States have until December 31, 2020, to utilize funds, extended from the original deadline of…


New research finds investment in neighborhood stabilization pays off—and more is needed

Written by on October 9, 2015

“House prices have sufficiently recovered and foreclosure activities have sufficiently abated.” That was the faulty argument made this past July to support a U.S. Senate proposal that would have rescinded federal Hardest Hit Funds – a critical source of funding for neighborhood stabilization efforts in communities hit hardest by the foreclosure crisis – in order…


How Detroit Taught Itself to Demolish Vacant Houses Safely

Written by on June 12, 2015

Cross-posted from Next City, this article is one of a ten-part series inspired by the 2015 Reclaiming Vacant Properties Conference. “It kind of used to be like the Wild West a few years ago,” Regina Royan recalls, thinking back on how buildings were being demolished in Detroit prior to 2014. The old norms, she says, lacked oversight. “We realized…


Breaking down deconstruction: What Detroit gained from dismantling instead of destroying

Written by on March 31, 2014

It might not be immediately obvious, but in the rubble and decay of vacant, dilapidated properties — those that are so far deteriorated, they’ve been slated for demolition — there is much value to be found. That’s where deconstruction comes into the picture. Deconstruction is the process of salvaging the structural components of a blighted…


Demolition the right way: Using strategic demolition to revitalize communities

Written by on December 20, 2013

Though temperatures were in the low 40’s, spirits were high when I attended the 3rd Anniversary of the multifaceted Vacants to Value program in Baltimore last month. Over the past 3 years, Baltimore’s Vacants to Value (V2V) program has rehabbed 1,500 homes and demolished more than 700. Both blight reduction strategies were on display during the anniversary…


Can we demolish our way to revitalization?

Written by on December 9, 2013

Originally posted on the National Housing Institute’s Rooflines blog While the answer to that question in the title of this piece is obvious, there’s a strong case to be made that a lot of the buildings that make up America’s older cities may have to go, if these cities are to find a path to…