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Economy and Business

Ohio's first countywide land bank is now operating in Northeast Ohio
There's been both progress and controversy in effort to stem foreclosure damage

Kevin Niedermier
After nearly 2 years of planning and lobbying, Cuyahoga County's land bank has officially started the work of collecting, rehabbing or demolishing and selling some of its estimated 35,000 vacant buildings. The land bank is considered by many to be one of best solutions to the foreclosure crisis which has driven down property values and decimated neighborhoods. WKSU's Kevin Niedermier looks at some of the program's early progress and controversies.
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Cuyahoga County Treasurer Jim Rokakis spearheaded the county land bank.
South Euclid Housing Director Sally Martin in front of one of over 550
vacant homes in the city.
This one will soon be demolished and the lot sold to adjoining property owners or turned into a community garden.
The vacant house on South Euclid's Colony Drive has been abandoned and left to deteriorate. It's been broken into several times and the copper has been stripped.
Inside, the ceiling has collapased and the smell of mold is in the air.
Houses on either side of the abandoned one, and almost all the rest of the houses on the street are well kept.  But one dilapidated house on the street drives down the value of all of them.
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