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What is Redevelopment?

The city does not have the option of extending its boundaries and has limited vacant land for development. Adjoining counties have large areas of vacant land available for development, but the city must recycle land to make development possible.

There are areas in all medium and large size cities in Virginia that are so extremely deteriorated that it is economically infeasible to rehabilitate the buildings. The area may have incompatible land uses, there may be environmental problems to overcome because of past uses, and there are probably other negative influences that reduce the area’s economic value. If it is a residential neighborhood, the quality of life is negatively affected because of the poor conditions in the area. Therefore, in these severely deteriorated areas, it is necessary to purchase property, relocate residents and businesses, demolish the existing buildings, and make the cleared land available for well-planned development.

Redevelopment obviously affects the lives and businesses of many people. For this reason it must be done with great care and compassion for those who are being displaced. One goal of redevelopment must be to improve the quality of life or the business environment for those being displaced.

Unless these areas are redeveloped, growth in the city is limited and it becomes more and more difficult to meet the needs of citizens and businesses in the city. Once these areas are redeveloped, new houses and business properties make a greater contribution to the city and increase city revenues so that other needed services may be provided. The areas are also necessary to create job growth so that residents of the city have greater opportunity for self-sufficiency.

Public resources must be used to reduce the cost to developers to make the site comparable in value to other sites in the region. If public funds are not used, private developers will not purchase property in the city because of the difficulty in assembling the land and the cost involved to prepare the site for development.