DETROIT (WWJ) – With dozens of school buildings sitting vacant across the city of Detroit, there is yet another push to make good with the unused land.

The Detroit Public Schools District held a press conference Thursday to announce $5 million in financing for developers who want to buy dozens of shuttered schools and vacant plots of land.

Detroit is currently looking to sell 80 schools and 40 land plots that have been left behind with a program called “Old School, New Uses’.

Taheara Ziglar is the Executive Director of the Detroit Local Initiative Support Corporation called LIST, which provided the $5 million in funds to assist buyers.

Ziglar told WWJ’s Vickie Thomas that there is plenty of interest in re-using the buildings, and laid out plans on how it will be done.

“It should be able to pay for things like redevelopment, acquisition and construction as projects move forward in neighborhoods that direly need these buildings re-purposed,” Ziglar said.

Tammy Dean, real estate manager for DPS, talked about featured properties up for grabs around the city.

“Some of the properties that were highlighted today was our 316,000 square foot warehouse, that’s right next to the Detroit Parade Company,” Dean said. “Our stock property is right off the water, that’s on Avondale Street.”

Tours of the featured DPS sites are being offered, as developers are now able to make deals on the spot.

Meantime, the site of the old Kettering High School is now being renovated into a 27-acre urban farm that will include hoop houses for an extended growing season, land redevelopment for planting and a food processing facility.

For more information on purchasing vacant school property and land, visit this link.


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