Vacant Land Stewardship

Community Progress regularly posts to this blog on a range of related topics to help communities across the country turn vacant spaces into vibrant places. Please check back regularly, and sign up for our newsletter to receive the latest news directly in your inbox.
Resident Engagement in Vacant Lot Greening: Empowering Communities for Neighborhood Revitalization
Resident Engagement in Vacant Lot Greening: Empowering Communities for Neighborhood Revitalization

This is an excerpt of Chapter 11 of Tackling Vacancy and Abandonment: Strategies and Impacts After the Great Recession, jointly produced by the Center for Community Progress, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. It has been lightly edited and condensed for the web….

Read More...
Approaches to Rural Property Vacancy in Law and Policy
Approaches to Rural Property Vacancy in Law and Policy

This is an excerpt of Chapter 8 of Tackling Vacancy and Abandonment: Strategies and Impacts After the Great Recession, jointly produced by the Center for Community Progress, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. It has been lightly edited and condensed for the web….

Read More...
How Community Progress Celebrated #LoveThatLot in 2022
How Community Progress Celebrated #LoveThatLot in 2022

In 2022, we celebrated Valentine’s Day with another #LoveThatLot, a social media campaign to show our love for the people and organizations turning vacant lots into vibrant places. Neighborhood Gardens Trust shared how they preserved 50 community gardens throughout Philadelphia. The City of Portland Bureau of Environmental Services shared how…

Read More...
Communities Across the US Are Addressing Property Deterioration and Vacancy With ARPA
Communities Across the US Are Addressing Property Deterioration and Vacancy With ARPA

States, Tribes, counties, and municipalities around the country have been hard at work determining how to use their allocations from the American Rescue Plan Act’s $350 billion State and Local Fiscal Recovery Fund – which we often clumsily abbreviate as the ARPA SLFRF.   Every unit of government should have already received at least the first…

Read More...
A Pioneering Approach to Bring a Legacy of Quality, Affordable Housing to Communities
A Pioneering Approach to Bring a Legacy of Quality, Affordable Housing to Communities

Communities nationwide struggle with inventories of properties that are causing harm—properties that are vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated (VAD). Often these properties are concentrated in areas where an intentional history of racist policies resulted in disinvestment and denied homeownership for many Black families—a loss of wealth that has compounded across several generations.   The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated these racial disparities and community…

Read More...
An Unprecedented Opportunity for COVID Relief and Equitable Neighborhood Transformation
An Unprecedented Opportunity for COVID Relief and Equitable Neighborhood Transformation

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…

Read More...
Download America’s Vacant Lot Landscape: Insights from the National Survey on Greening
Download America’s Vacant Lot Landscape: Insights from the National Survey on Greening

How are vacant lots evolving in the United States? What strategies do professionals consider most effective at returning purpose to these properties? What have practitioners learned in the last several years that other municipalities and organizations can benefit from? And what do organizations still need to do this work effectively? 

Read More...
Problem to Purpose: The Drug Activity Answer for One Lansing Neighborhood, Get Creative
Problem to Purpose: The Drug Activity Answer for One Lansing Neighborhood, Get Creative

Empty lots are open opportunities – for safety threats or community innovation. Pegasus Garden, located in the Prospect PLACE neighborhood in Lansing, Michigan, is a great example of what happens when communities choose option two.

Read More...
Problem to Purpose: Placemaking Brings Community Healing for Residents Impacted by Substance Abuse
Problem to Purpose: Placemaking Brings Community Healing for Residents Impacted by Substance Abuse

Today’s opioid epidemic has become “the worst public health crisis in Pennsylvania,” according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health. On average, 10 Pennsylvanians lose their lives to a substance abuse disorder each day. Hinge Collective principals, Alexa Bosse and Ari Miller, are working to find new ways to fight Philadelphia’s challenge…

Read More...
A Love Letter to the Next Decade of Community Development (from Shelterforce)  
A Love Letter to the Next Decade of Community Development (from Shelterforce)  

I’m in love. When you wake up every day knowing that what you do helps improve people’s lives and where they live, it’s one of the best feelings on earth. After witnessing years of hollow promises from political and business leaders who promised to “make communities better,” I get a…

Read More...
Resident Engagement in Vacant Lot Greening: Empowering Communities for Neighborhood Revitalization

This is an excerpt of Chapter 11 of Tackling Vacancy and Abandonment: Strategies and Impacts After the Great Recession, jointly produced by the Center for Community Progress, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. It has been lightly edited and condensed for the web….

Read More...
Approaches to Rural Property Vacancy in Law and Policy

This is an excerpt of Chapter 8 of Tackling Vacancy and Abandonment: Strategies and Impacts After the Great Recession, jointly produced by the Center for Community Progress, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. It has been lightly edited and condensed for the web….

Read More...
How Community Progress Celebrated #LoveThatLot in 2022

In 2022, we celebrated Valentine’s Day with another #LoveThatLot, a social media campaign to show our love for the people and organizations turning vacant lots into vibrant places. Neighborhood Gardens Trust shared how they preserved 50 community gardens throughout Philadelphia. The City of Portland Bureau of Environmental Services shared how…

Read More...
Communities Across the US Are Addressing Property Deterioration and Vacancy With ARPA

States, Tribes, counties, and municipalities around the country have been hard at work determining how to use their allocations from the American Rescue Plan Act’s $350 billion State and Local Fiscal Recovery Fund – which we often clumsily abbreviate as the ARPA SLFRF.   Every unit of government should have already received at least the first…

Read More...
A Pioneering Approach to Bring a Legacy of Quality, Affordable Housing to Communities

Communities nationwide struggle with inventories of properties that are causing harm—properties that are vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated (VAD). Often these properties are concentrated in areas where an intentional history of racist policies resulted in disinvestment and denied homeownership for many Black families—a loss of wealth that has compounded across several generations.   The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated these racial disparities and community…

Read More...
An Unprecedented Opportunity for COVID Relief and Equitable Neighborhood Transformation

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…

Read More...
Download America’s Vacant Lot Landscape: Insights from the National Survey on Greening

How are vacant lots evolving in the United States? What strategies do professionals consider most effective at returning purpose to these properties? What have practitioners learned in the last several years that other municipalities and organizations can benefit from? And what do organizations still need to do this work effectively? 

Read More...
Problem to Purpose: The Drug Activity Answer for One Lansing Neighborhood, Get Creative

Empty lots are open opportunities – for safety threats or community innovation. Pegasus Garden, located in the Prospect PLACE neighborhood in Lansing, Michigan, is a great example of what happens when communities choose option two.

Read More...
Problem to Purpose: Placemaking Brings Community Healing for Residents Impacted by Substance Abuse

Today’s opioid epidemic has become “the worst public health crisis in Pennsylvania,” according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health. On average, 10 Pennsylvanians lose their lives to a substance abuse disorder each day. Hinge Collective principals, Alexa Bosse and Ari Miller, are working to find new ways to fight Philadelphia’s challenge…

Read More...
A Love Letter to the Next Decade of Community Development (from Shelterforce)  

I’m in love. When you wake up every day knowing that what you do helps improve people’s lives and where they live, it’s one of the best feelings on earth. After witnessing years of hollow promises from political and business leaders who promised to “make communities better,” I get a…

Read More...