DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – The deal is off. A Detroit businessman has dropped plans to buy 6,350 homes and lots he earlier claimed in a tax foreclosure auction.

Herb Strather told WWJ Newsradio 950 that he withdrew his offer to buy the properties for 3.1 million dollars because he has decided to work directly with the city’s Land Bank instead.

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The “blight bundle” offered by the county contained tax foreclosed properties, vacant lots and abandoned houses.

Strather said Wayne County will refund a $315,000 down payment on his $3.2 million winning bid. He says the money will be used to get a deal with the city of Detroit.

County Treasurer Ray Wojtowicz that Strather’s bid was being withdrawn after discussions over a possible development with a company initially listed by Strather as a partner in his bid.

“The development of the this package of properties was unique and we appreciate the interest expressed by Eco Solutions, John Page, and Herb Strather. While we were not able to reach agreement as to a development agreement we do look forward to continued participation by Eco Solutions as we work with Mayor Duggan to address blight in our neighborhoods,” Wojtowicz said, in a statement.

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“Blight elimination is essential to improve conditions in our communities.”

Eric Foster, Senior Consultant and Chief Strategist with LB-3 Management in West Bloomfield said he wasn’t surprised that Strather and his team withdrew their bid.

“Because the cash you need to have at hand to do that and self-finance, they don’t neceairy have that type of liquidity,” Foster said.

The sale was part of an effort by Detroit and Wayne County to fight blight by packaging groups of properties.

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