How did we get Here?
Street Graffiti

The discussion of blight, now most closely associated with derelict buildings and land, has been ongoing for more than a century, when reformers first railed against hazardous slums occupied by immigrants working in the nation’s booming factories. Cities relied on demolition to eradicate blight. When de-industrialization drained their populations. Post-war government policy made it easier to drive to suburbs, Further weakening city housing markets fueling more vacancy and blight. White flight and "urban renewal" particularly marginalized African Americans. Fast-forward to the Great Recession of 2005. The mortgage crisis led to widespread foreclosures, decimating entire sections of formerly industrial cities.

How did we get Here?
 

LOTS OF IDEAS 

How did we get Here?
Playing in a Tunnel

The City of Albany is home to approximately 3,500 vacant lots, mostly hardscrabble, brick-hard land that nonetheless holds thousands of possibilities to improve the lives of the people nearby.  City Parks require investment, maintenance and on going programming, besides, the City does not own all this land.

That's a lot of lots!
Street Graffiti

The discussion of blight, now most closely associated with derelict buildings and land, has been ongoing for more than a century, when reformers first railed against hazardous slums occupied by immigrants working in the nation’s booming factories. Cities relied on demolition to eradicate blight. When de-industrialization drained their populations. Post-war government policy made it easier to drive to suburbs, Further weakening city housing markets fueling more vacancy and blight. White flight and "urban renewal" particularly marginalized African Americans. Fast-forward to the Great Recession of 2005. The mortgage crisis led to widespread foreclosures, decimating entire sections of formerly industrial cities.

"Why doesn't the city just make parks out of these lots?"
Volunteers-Garden

It will be better for everyone in the city if private owners develop these lots, care for them and generate taxes. Cities like Detroit and Cleveland, which, large Cities like Detroit have blazed the trail by slowly re-claiming vacant land for orchards, farms, small businesses and homes. While community gardens and pocket parks have been a staple revitalization tools, other novel and ambitious strategies are falling into place.

Therefore!

HUNDREDS OF VACANT LOTS 

How did we get Here?
Street Graffiti
Playing in a Tunnel

The City of Albany is home to approximately 3,500 vacant lots, mostly hardscrabble, brick-hard land that nonetheless holds thousands of possibilities to improve the lives of the people nearby.  City Parks require investment, maintenance and on going programming, besides, the City does not own all this land.

That's a lot of lots!
Organic Vegetable Farm

The Albany County Land Bank has become a one-stop shop for acquiring vacant properties.   Habitat for Humanity has built new attractive homes. Urban farms have sprung up, not only providing fresh food, but teaching how it grows. The Radix Center in Albany has transformed one acre where a gas station once sat into a farm where chickens feed on food scraps from the nearby rescue mission and an orchard already is producing peaches and apples. A smattering of rain gardens in Albany County demonstrate how plantings can catch water, reducing runoff into the Hudson River.  This Website will inspire you to get a lot and dig in.

The discussion of blight, now most closely associated with derelict buildings and land, has been ongoing for more than a century, when reformers first railed against hazardous slums occupied by immigrants working in the nation’s booming factories. When de-industrialization drained their populations.Cities relied on demolition to eradicate blight.  Post-war government policy made it easier to drive to suburbs, further weakening city housing markets and fueling more vacancy and blight. White flight and "urban renewal" particularly marginalized African Americans. Fast-forward to the Great Recession of 2005. The mortgage crisis led to widespread foreclosures, decimating entire sections of formerly vibrant cities.

"Why doesn't the city just make parks out of these lots?"
Volunteers-Garden

It will be better for everyone in the city if private citizens develop these lots, care for them and generate taxes. Cities like Detroit and Cleveland have blazed the trail by slowly re-claiming vacant land for orchards, farms, small businesses and homes. While community gardens and pocket parks have been staple revitalization tools, other novel and ambitious strategies are falling into place.

Therefore!

Land can be purchased from a number of sources. But don’t buy a lot until you have reviewed the zoning laws, and established your plan and budget. It’s important to understand the impact your idea will have on the neighborhood, and vice versa.  Visit at different times of day. Observe the traffic, the sun exposure, the storm water, etc. Connect with the neighbors and attend a community meeting. If you have a permitting issue, you will need neighborhood support.

 

Whether you have an idea or you need an idea, this TOOL KIT will help you evaluate the long term impacts of your proposal. Your idea may look like a 200% improvement over the current condition, but if it doesn't meet the zoning laws or does not support the neighborhood’s long term vision, you may have to jump through some expensive and time consuming hoops. The city of Albany will also consider the environmental benefits of your   proposal. Utilize these ratings to find your path of least resistance and highest reward .

LAND FOR SALE