Camden mayor says she's ready to tackle vacant properties

Posted: April 15, 2011

Camden residents have been seeking relief from the 4,000 abandoned properties spread throughout the city's nine square miles for many years.

On Thursday, Mayor Dana Redd told a group of 200 residents and community activists that she was ready to tackle the issue, citing the vacant properties' negative effect on property values, public safety, and the quality of life.

Redd outlined the city's plan to use her newly developed Business Growth and Development Team as the first point of contact for anyone hoping to redevelop abandoned properties.

The days of city departments "operating in different silos are over," she said. Vince Bassara, Camden's Urban Enterprise Zone coordinator, will be in charge of the team.

The team will take proposals from community groups, nonprofits, and developers. It expects to meet weekly to determine which properties are eligible to be placed on the abandoned-properties list or suggest a different action, Bassara said.


Contact staff writer Claudia Vargas at 856-779-3917 or cvargas@phillynews.com.

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