TribLIVE

| News


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Pittsburgh community chimes in on land bank proposal

Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014, 11:33 p.m.
 

Calling for community consensus, Ronell Guy stood in front of more than 100 Pittsburgh residents and told City Council to be more inclusive.

“I'm tired of being left out,” said Guy, executive director of the Northside Coalition for Fair Housing.

Council held a public hearing Thursday night on proposed land bank legislation, drawing a crowd in council chambers that spilled into the halls and had 68 speakers signed up to comment.

The proposal has incited calls for equity and transparency in Pittsburgh land use.

“We need to be careful and thoughtful and conscientious about what we create,” Guy said.

The legislation creates a seven-member land bank board with the power to purchase vacant city-owned or tax-delinquent properties through an expedited title process, among other fast-track capabilities, and resell them, though the land bank members would be responsible for outlining sale procedures.

Speakers represented neighborhood groups, faith organizations, business owners and private developers. Nearly all of the first 20 speakers urged council to rewrite the bill in some capacity, even those who said they support the concept.

The bill is sponsored by District 7 Councilwoman Deb Gross. Thursday night, she said feedback is part of the process in amending the bill and “making it more responsive to our needs.”

Rashad Byrdsong, founder of the Community Empowerment Association, suggested creating a land bank task force that could nominate four of 11 board members.

“Some of us have spent upwards of 20 years addressing blight in our communities,” he said.

Melissa Daniels is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at mdaniels@tribweb.com or 412-380-8511.

 

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Allegheny

  1. Outbound 376 reopened after man on exit sign caused closure
  2. Unidentified body found in Stowe
  3. Limited North Shore tailgating time yields success
  4. Allegheny County may send Pittsburgh HR complaints
  5. Mother, son displaced by West Mifflin fire
  6. Tall ship makes return voyage to Presque Isle
  7. August Wilson Center’s financial woes leave little guys in a lurch
  8. Newsmaker: Kara Petro Montgomery
  9. Carnegie Mellon University picks architect for business school
  10. Despite PSU-Central Fla., Dubliners slow to embrace American football
  11. Uber and Lyft say they’ll rely on PennDOT inspections for safety
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.