Municipalities and Land Bank Authorities across the state — including several in West Michigan — have received more than $3.6 million from the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) to combat blight.
Kalamazoo, Marshall, Muskegon and the Benton Harbor area were all among the recipients of funds from the state’s top housing and development agency, according to a statement released by MSHDA on Thursday morning.
“An investment in blight elimination is an investment in the future of our great state,” MSHDA Executive Director Earl Poleski said in a statement. “These blight grants will trigger economic growth and improve public safety in towns and neighborhoods from the U.P. to southeastern Michigan.”
The 19 winning land banks and local units of government that applied for the grants in June were awarded up to $25,000 per residential structure and up to $100,000 per commercial structure and each had to meet certain criteria as to be considered a “public nuisance,” according to a statement.
36 total applications were received totalling $6.2 million in requests.
Muskegon received $195,000 intended for the Nelson Neighborhood. The funds will be used to demolish 20 structures in their target area that includes the Mercy Health-Hackley Campus, Muskegon High School, the Midtown Square development adjacent to the city’s downtown district.
The Kalamazoo County Land Bank Authority received $132,000 to demolish six blighted residential properties in Kalamazoo’s Northside, Vine and Edison neighborhoods, creating room for new housing stock and commercial redevelopment.
$100,000 for the Calhoun County Land Bank Authority will be used to demolish an abandoned commercial property within a residential neighborhood in Marshall.