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Land Banks Announce 1,294 Central Ohio Demolitions

Land banks in central Ohio say more than 1,200 blighted housing units were demolished last year at a cost of $10.2 million. The demolitions, paid for by Columbus, Franklin County and a grant from the state attorney general's office, are up considerably from the 527 units demolished in 2013. Edward Leonard, Franklin County Treasurer and board chairman of the Central Ohio Community Improvement Corporation, said such problem properties depress property values and reduce tax revenues that fund schools, human services and job creation efforts. Columbus Mayor Michael Colman has targeted the elimination of blight, launching a 2012 program to go after vacant and abandoned houses in Columbus neighborhoods through enforcement, demolition, and restoration.