Akron launching a new ‘Mow to Own’ vacant lot program

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AKRON, Ohio (WJW) — The city of Akron has come up with a creative way to address property abandonment within its limits.

The city’s new  “Akron Neighborhood: Mow to Own” program allows Akron residents to add vacant land to their current properties for free, if they promise to mow and take care of the space.

“The vacant lots available are underutilized and often are a source of complaints from surrounding neighbors,” Mayor Dan Horrigan said in a statement. “Offering this ‘sweat equity’ program helps return these parcels back to the tax rolls while giving residents a unique opportunity to expand their land ownership at very little cost.”

Akron’s Director of Neighborhood Assistance John Valle explained in a statement that it costs nearly $400 a year for the city to maintain a vacant lot. The Mow to Own program, which would transfer about 250 city-owned vacant properties to current homeowners, could save city taxpayers an estimated $100,000, Valle said.

Property owners who are eligible to be a part of the Mow to Own were notified by the city via mailers, but those applicable sites can also be found here.

Homeowners can find out more about the program by calling 330-375-2311. Applications are due June 15, and all owners will know by June 30 if they’ve been accepted into the program.

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