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 their brownfields programs transform abandoned properties into places people can love and live.
And the Chicago Urban Art Retreat submitted Peace Parks of North Lawndale, a project to turn vacant lots into beautiful gardens that celebrate Black history.
Why addressing vacant land matters
When land in our communities sits empty, we often fail to see its potential. While a vacant lot may not seem to do as much direct harm to a neighborhood as an abandoned or deteriorated house, research shows that vacant land stewardship immediately benefits residents. Neighborhoods with well maintained and repurposed vacant lots experience less crime, more community cohesion, and a higher quality of life.
Learn from others
In Keys to Success: Lessons from the Field, we share findings from a six-year research project exploring greening as a method to reduce youth violence and injury. Together with the Michigan Youth Violence Prevention Center, we identified practices that help greening organizations like community organizations, nonprofits, and land banks meet the rising demand for vacant lot stewardship across the country.
Ideas for transforming vacant land
Looking for inspiration to transform vacant lots into local gems? Community Progress has a database of vacant lot projects from communities across the country.
I missed #LoveThatLot, but I have a vacant lot project I want to share!
Share your vacant-to-vibrant land transformation project with us and help inspire others.
My community is dealing with a lot of vacant lots—what should I do?
Explore our self-assessment tool, which matches you with reading and resources about vacant land stewardship based on your community’s needs. If your community is ready to tackle vacancy and abandonment on a large scale, contact Community Progress to learn more about the customized expert guidance we offer through our Technical Assistance programs.