ATLANTA -- The city of Atlanta would all-but give away hundreds of parcels of city-owned property – in a proposal designed to create affordable housing across much of the city.
The parcels would be among some 1400 the city owns -- many of them parcels that have been neglected for years in residential areas.
One of them is an overgrown plot of land on Violet Street.
Yet if cleared, the land would neatly fit a home similar to the others that line Violet Street Southeast. The land is a long-forgotten city-owned property, says housing activist Matthew Cardinale.
"There’s really no reason that this should just be sitting here like this especially when there are families really struggling to find affordable housing on the market," Cardinale said.
To that end, Cardinale has helped write a proposed city ordinance that would include this parcel in a city property sale.
The plots of land would sell for one dollar to non-profit developers who would building housing on them and re-sell them to qualified lower-income buyers at a fraction of the market rate of homes for sale just a few blocks away. "With a mortgage payment that’s no more than three four hundred dollars a month," Cardinale predicted.
Cardinale says the program would have 30 years of financial incentives to keep buyers from flipping the homes – in a city where rising home prices have all-but shut out many middle income families.
The land sell off program is at least weeks away. The city council has to pass it first.