The City of Roanoke, VA recently established a land bank—a large body of land held by a public or private organization for future development—to transform vacant, derelict, or blighted housing into affordable housing for the city’s residents.
Like many cities, Roanoke has a decent share of properties with broken or boarded up windows, damaged walls, or crumbling foundation. Rather than acquiring these properties to sell them to the highest bidder, the City is working with a non-profit organization called Total Action for Progress (TAP). TAP’s Housing Department will administer the city’s land bank program, working to turn the acquired properties into affordable housing.
TAP will focus on abandoned and tax-delinquent properties. Once a property is identified and been through the tax delinquency process, it will be turned over to TAP.
The program is still getting off the ground, but once TAP has properties in hand, it will work with its partners, including Habitat for Humanity, Rebuilding America, and the Roanoke Development and Housing Authority.
The program intends to be beneficial to everyone: the City, TAP, local non-profits, low-income residents, and all Roanoke residents who hope to see abandoned housing transformed for the good of their neighbors and the community.
For more information, see TAP’s Housing page.