The city also kicked off a public comment period of 15 days to get input on how the funds should be distributed. City officials said the plan won't be completed until after a public meeting in January, with the first projects to begin after that.
In general, the money will be split between buying nearly 200 properties for the Indianapolis Land Bank, acquiring 50 units to rehabilitate and developing 70 affordable rental units. Smaller amounts will go toward demolition, new construction, financing and administration . . .
Maury Plambeck, director of the Department of Metropolitan Development, said the public comments and meetings will help determine where to focus within the target areas. He said the money would not solve the problem but would make a dent.
At least 25 percent of the money must be used to buy and redevelop abandoned or foreclosed homes for people whose incomes are not more than 50 percent of the area's median income.
The federal funding provides a large pool of money the City has not had available in the past to tackle abandoned homes. It is estimated there are anywhere between 8,000-10,000 abandoned homes in Indianapolis at present. Let's hope the City makes wise use of these funds to put a real dent in the problem.