Town Hall Meeting on vacant buildings, abandoned lots

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ST. LOUIS-A call has been made to clean up some of the cities most rundown neighborhoods. Local leaders say the revitalization begins with creating a plan for the large number of abandoned and vacant homes.

The empty buildings in several north city neighborhoods, are not just an eyesore. State Senator Jamilah Nasheed says they`re also a magnet for crime. The O'Fallon Park Recreation Complex was full of people Monday night. Many residents live in those communities wanted to find out what can be done to fix the vacant property problem.

Senator Nasheed says the community needs to figure out how to get the buildings up to code so people can purchase the properties. She believes a large portion of the city's crime is tied to properties sitting empty.

Back in January, a 20-year old man was charged with the abduction and assault of a 12-year-old girl who was later found in a vacant building. Nasheed says currently the city owns nearly 10,000 properties but she says red tape is preventing people from buying them.

The senator says she`s working with Mayor Lyda Krewson to discuss options for the properties.