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…


This Tax Day, making the case for property tax reform in Detroit

Written by on April 15, 2016

  Ineffective property tax systems can have a detrimental community impact. They weaken the delivery of services that improve quality of life for local residents – from essential functions like public safety, to supportive services like enforcement of property maintenance standards. Many of the cities that we work in face a shrinking population, widespread property…


Charting a new way forward through attorney-practitioner partnerships: Part II —Milwaukee

Written by on December 15, 2015

This is the second in a two-part series exploring how strong working partnerships between practitioners and attorneys can give rise to innovation in the work to reclaim and revitalize blighted properties. Missed Part I—Syracuse? Click here >> Let’s give ourselves a little breathing room In Milwaukee, a productive partnership between Gregg Hagopian, assistant city attorney,…


How the zombie house crisis mutated and what cities are doing about it

Written by on July 10, 2015

Cross-posted from Next City, this article is one of a ten-part series inspired by the 2015 Reclaiming Vacant Properties Conference. Are there more zombies in our city than ever before, or are we just paying more attention to them? “Zombie properties” is a clever name to describe residential buildings that are neither alive nor dead: They are caught in…


Efficient property tax collections vs. the cult of homeownership

Written by on October 5, 2013

Cross-posted from Next City, this article is part of the 2013 Reclaiming Vacant Properties Conference liveblog series. Check out all the in-depth content — even if you weren’t able to join us in Philadelphia from September 9-11, 2013, you’ll feel like you did! This morning’s session “Making the Case for Efficient, Effective and Equitable Tax Foreclosure Reform” raised…


Winter 2012 Legislative Roundup

Written by on December 11, 2012

This year many states, counties and municipalities across the country pursued legislative remedies to make their efforts to address vacant and abandoned properties more effective. This issue’s Legislative Roundup takes a brief look into some of the successful initiatives that we had an opportunity to help support this year. Pennsylvania Passes a Land Bank Act. The…


Guest Blog: Want to Lead Change in Your Community?

Written by on June 2, 2011

By Patrick Morrissy “Comprehensive and successful community stabilization is a goal that eludes most of us – especially in the wake of the foreclosure crisis and in a down housing market – but one organization knows how to do it really well.” Kind words from Patrick Morrissy, Executive Director of HANDS Inc. We always appreciate…


See You in the Big Easy!

Written by on May 24, 2011

As Director of Community Progress’ New Orleans Vacant Properties Initiative, I am particularly thrilled to announce the location of our fourth national Reclaiming Vacant Properties Conference in 2012. It’s New Orleans! The theme for next year’s conference is “Remaking America for the 21st Century.” New Orleans, of course, is a perfect setting in which to…