Friday, June 21, 2013

Mount Airy NEP closes with a bang

The Neighborhood Enhancement Program (NEP) in Mount Airy came to a close on Tuesday with the demolition of a blighted house on Colerain Avenue, which Mount Airy Town Council president Cindy Walsh called "symbolic" of what's happened in the community over the past 90 days.

The program brings together City departments, neighborhood businesses and residents to address blight, crime, and other nuisances, helping to forge new partnerships that will facilitate long-term neighborhood revitalization and reinvestment.

Mount Airy is the fifteenth neighborhood to benefit from the award-winning program.

"We hope to continue with the progress in Mount Airy," Walsh said. "Hopefully the partnership we've had with the City will continue."

During the enforcement blitz, City inspectors checked out 1,396 properties for building code violations. Ten percent were found to be in violation, and 11 property owners already have made repairs.

Cincinnati Police District 5 made more than 200 arrests for drug and other criminal activity, and Keep Cincinnati Beautiful reports a 3.7 percent decrease in neighborhood blight.

Councilmember Wendell Young pointed out that the 90-day mark is a project check, and not an end of the work to be done.

"We'll continue to work with our partners to revitalize our neighborhoods," he said. "This program does make a difference."

Following a press conference, dozens of neighborhood residents stuck around to watch the demolition of a house at 5604 Colerain Avenue, which has been a community hazard since it suffered a one-alarm fire on December 11, 2012.

Apparently, its tenants had been evicted and had come back to steal its copper piping, severing a gas line which led to an explosion and fire that caused its second floor to collapse into its basement.

The NEP will come to Carthage in August.

Previous reading on BC:
Blight and crime reduction program coming to Mount Airy, Carthage (1/18/13)
Pendleton enforcement blitz reduces blight and crime, promotes redevelopment (11/20/12)
Neighborhood Enhancement Program kicks off in Pendleton (8/15/12)
Groundbreaking for Kennedy Heights center 'a delicious, marvelous day' (6/15/12)
Crime, blight reduction program launches in Over-the-Rhine (3/7/11)