Driven by the significant needs and rooted in the organization’s deep history in the state, Community Progress instituted a unique, place-based program dedicated to continually serving Michigan communities.

The Michigan Initiatives staff serve as the leading resource for local and state policies and best practices that address the full cycle of property revitalization. Our skilled staff, advisors, fellows, and consultants have helped communities across Michigan assess, reform, develop, and/or implement systems and policies to more effectively address the challenges and costs imposed by vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated properties with a focus on equity, inclusion, and resiliency.

To find out more, or to request technical assistance, please contact Payton Heins, Director of Michigan Initiatives, at pheins@communityprogress.org.


A team of experts from Community Progress will dive in to review the challenges your city or town faces related to the cycle of vacancy and building healthy communities. Tasks may include:

  • Diagnosing the underlying factors that keep problem properties “stuck” in decline, which negatively impact neighbors and neighborhoods
  • Helping communities understand their existing tools and legal powers, and design and implement new tools and solutions appropriate to local conditions and resident priorities
  • Supporting the development of data-driven strategies, including innovative partnerships and funding sources, to increase the effectiveness of local efforts in support of equitable outcomes
  • Guiding implementation of a community’s equitable, effective, and efficient approach to VAD properties and neighborhood disinvestment to help ensure success