Published: 2016

/ Student Work

Strengthening Land Bank Sales Programs to Stabilize Detroit Neighborhoods


Students examined the results of Detroit Land Bank sales programs and developed a plan for strengthening them in achieving the Land Bank’s mission to return vacant and abandoned property to productive reuse that stabilizes neighborhoods.  The Land Bank has gained more than 97,000 properties, created numerous new programs, and hired many staff in the last two years.  It is the largest land bank in the country and is in the vanguard of innovative approaches to addressing the challenges of vacant and abandoned property.  The Land Bank’s leaders have based their work on best practices and policy analysis from national land bank experts.  The sales programs–auctions, direct sales, side lots, and community partners–can now change in ways that will continue to stabilize neighborhoods. At the same time, the Land Bank will likely be able to sell more properties if the list of Land Bank-owned properties is made public and the Land Bank works with other city departments to facilitate their plans for use of land.  Enabling residents and others to give the Land Bank feedback on property conditions can strengthen the Land Bank’s relationships with citizens.

Students worked with the Detroit Land Bank Authority and with an advisory committee that included representatives from the Center for Community Progress, U-SNAP-BAC, Warrendale Community Organization, Cody Rouge Action Alliance, and the Department of Neighborhoods District 7 office.


Michelle Bennett, Maximilius Cupp, Alexander Hermann, Braden Mitchell, Mengwei Sun, Wenting Yin, Mikah Zaslow, Xueman Zhao


Libby Levy and Margaret Dewar


Community Partner: Detroit Land Bank Authority
Location: Detroit
Pages: 144
Year: 2016
Topic: Housing, Community, and Economic Development Planning; Land Use and Environmental Planning

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