Mahoning land bank demolishes 600th home

Staff report


The Mahoning County Land Bank celebrated a milestone Friday as it completed its 600th demolition project.

The property at 846 N. 15th St. in Sebring is one of 15 demolitions the land bank plans to carry out over the next several months.

“[That] may not sound like a lot, unless you live there and see the impact these projects can make,” said Debora Flora, Mahoning County Land bank executive director.

She said the land bank chose Sebring because it exemplifies the impact housing demolition can have on small communities.

“Sebring is in a lot of ways like a mini-Youngstown,” Flora said. “It has a rich industrial history and has faced some challenges with economic development, much like Youngstown, and it’s leveraging innovative programs like this to bring important benefits.”

The land bank began demolitions in 2015 to bring relief to neighbors and village leaders who struggled to cope with the proliferation of abandoned and vacant homes that followed the foreclosure crisis.

Many local officials and community leaders have commented on the importance of the land bank’s work in the attempt to revitalize the Mahoning Valley.

Mahoning County Treasurer Dan Yemma serves as the land bank’s chairman.

“When the land bank and community leaders come together to clean up blighted, abandoned properties, the results are impactful,” Yemma said.

The land bank has demolitions scheduled in Sebring, North Benton, Washingtonville, Youngstown, Milton Township, Beaver Township and Smith Township over the next month.

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