There are more than 50,000 vacant houses in Allegheny County according to the most recently available data from the 2010 census. Too many of these houses have succumbed to blight. According to Department of Permits, Licenses & Inspections Director Maura Kennedy in a WESA article, “Blight can spread like a weed.” “But the opposite is also true,” she said. “Once you start holding people accountable and forcing change it’s really exciting to see the spread of dumpsters and people painting their porches and reinvesting in their community.”
Blighted properties cost everyone. Surrounding homes lose property value, the city loses tax revenues, and these houses eat up city services in terms of needed code enforcement and maintenance, such as boarding up buildings or demolishing them.
If you or your organization are interested in fighting blight in our city, there’s a must attend event next month. On Saturday, November 7th, the Pittsburgh Blight Working Group will present Pittsburgh Blight Bootcamp. This one-day event will give you the opportunity to learn about resources and best practices to increase the impact of community led blight elimination efforts.
The day will feature nine sessions and a keynote address from a regional expert. Everyone from residents hoping to learn more about blight remediation to organizations looking to expand their skill sets will find something of interest.
Sessions will cover such topics as:
- Data Driven Decision Making
- Community Arts to Fight Blight
- Green Space Solutions to Securing Vacant Properties
Additionally, there will be a panel of blight remediation practitioners ranging from local community advocates, government officials, to nonprofit professionals.
The Pittsburgh Blight Working Group is made up of the City of Pittsburgh, Neighborhood Allies, GTECH Strategies, PCRG and Design Center. More information for the Pittsburgh Blight Bootcamp can be found here.
The first 100 registrants will receive a free Pittsburgh Blight Bootcamp t-shirt, so sign up today!
Pittsburgh Blight Bootcamp
When: Saturday, November 7, 2015 from 8:00 AM to 3:30 PM
Where: Wyndham Pittsburgh University Center, 100 Lytton Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Register Online: Here