Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Downsizing for the Future

How prevalent is the shrinking city phenomena in Michigan? Habitat for Humanity is tearing down houses in Saginaw.

Monica Davey of The New York Times reports:

Volunteers are learning to rip down plaster, pull apart walls and tear off roofs. To the nonprofit group’s long-held aim of constructing houses for those in need, Saginaw’s affiliate has lately added to its mission by doing the opposite.

As part of an agreement with the city, and with at least $500,000 from the state and federal governments, the Habitat volunteers and paid workers plan to deconstruct and demolish two vacant, dilapidated houses here a week, every week, over the next two years. As for creating homes, they will build or refurbish eight houses this year.

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