After 40-some years, Hamtramck’s vacant lots can now be taken off the city’s hands and sold.
There are about 300 lots that will be auctioned off in the coming weeks. The first auction was held on Thursday, the day we went to press this week. It’s probably a safe assumption that a lot of people were interested in purchasing one or more lots.
The city was forced to withhold the lots over these many decades in order to satisfy a housing discrimination lawsuit which required the building of over 200 housing units.
Since the housing units required somewhere to build them the city was told to hold off on selling lots as they came up over the years until the housing construction was completed.
It took this many years to come up with a plan and funding to settle the housing lawsuit.
It’s hoped that developers will be interested in bundling lots and continue the housing construction. But instead of offering a package of parcels to would-be developers, the city opted to basically hold a fire sale.
Either way, it’s a win for the city since it finally means the city can start collecting property taxes on these lots. Hopefully not too many will simply end up being an extension of a neighboring house and sit empty.