ABOUT THE LAND BANK
BY THE NUMBERS
$4.3M in demolition funding secured
240+ blighted structures demolished
230+ property transactions back to private hands since January, 2020
$600,000 US EPA Brownfield Assessment Grant secured
3 Property Condition Surveys totaling nearly 20,000 parcels performed
1 Countywide Residential Market Analysis performed
2 homes successfully rehabbed
A primary objective of the land bank is to return property to productive use. We have inventory of property we own as a result of demolishing blighted structures, but we also have the ability to sell property that has been forfeited (ie, has gone through the foreclosure process and did not sell at Sheriff Sale). We also will sometimes have home rehabs for sale or parcels that are subject to community development goals.
Please see the “Process” and “Property Sales” tabs for additional information.
The land bank has demolished over 240 blighted residential structures in the county since 2013. While the most of the worst structures have been addressed, there is still a need in our cities and townships for demolition of structures when rehab is no longer an option.
Studies have demonstrated that removing blighted structures helps increase property values in the surrounding neighborhood. Communities also become safer, as there are fewer vacant structures in which illegal activity can take place.
The land bank works to ensure that the private market has the opportunity to rehab housing when feasible, and it’s the organization’s preference when possible to rehab rather than demolish structures. To date, the land bank has itself rehabbed two houses, going down the studs and providing a new, turn-key home for the new owners.
Ashtabula County is home to many former industrial sites in need of clean up. The land bank, in conjunction with the County Port Authority and the County Planning department, applied for and received a $600,000 USEPA Brownfield Assessment grant that enables us to identify environmental issues with a property and get it on track to be cleaned up and put back to productive use.
LAND ASSEMBLY AND REDEVELOPMENT PROJECTS
Communities plan carefully to ensure that redevelopment of certain areas is consistent with the existing neighborhood and brings the greatest possible benefit. The land bank works with municipalities on the redevelopment process to achieve their goals.
What does this mean? First, the land bank will secure site control of the property (to date, any land assembly has been by securing forfeited property that went through two Sheriff sales prior to the land bank taking ownership). The land bank then seeks out private developer interest and works with the community and the developer to create a private development project that meets the needs of the neighborhood.
COMMUNITY PLANNING ASSISTANCE
Housing Grading System
The land bank works to help communities understand neighborhood conditions, and to provide tools to enable them to: pursue grants, plan for development, pursue effective code enforcement, administer programs, and track progress over time.
We performed property condition surveys in Geneva, Conneaut, and Ashtabula—nearly 20,000 parcels in total—to provide a clear visualization of neighborhood conditions. The cities will be able to use this information for the above efforts and more broadly ensure their neighborhoods are cleaner, safer, and meeting the needs of residents.