Cleaning Up A Tulsa Neighborhood

Tuesday, February 27th 2007, 10:36 am
By: News On 6

The City of Tulsa began a demolition project in the Northgate neighborhood in North Tulsa on Tuesday. Usually if the city is tearing down houses, it's because the owner won't do anything to maintain it and it's become a danger, or maybe a drug house. The News on 6’s Emory Bryan reports, in this case, the city is tearing down houses the city owns and the land will be left empty.

Charles Jordan sat in his truck and watched as a house was knocked down and the debris hauled off.

"I think it's wonderful, I think they need to do quite a few of these out here," he said.

He's like many of his neighbors, who are happy to see the empty homes torn down.

"I'm glad, it needed it, if nobody is living in it and the owner won't fix it up, knock it down," said neighbor Patricia Ballard.

The Tulsa Housing Authority owns the homes, but considers them too expensive to repair. Rather than leave them empty, the city is demolishing them.

"We'll pull the concrete up to the sidewalk, we'll take up the sidewalk, and there won't be anything but dirt there when we're through," Floyd Emery with the City of Tulsa Public Works said.

The city plans to demolish nine homes. The land will be left clear for now, but could one day be sold for new houses. It's part of a bigger plan to turn around a neighborhood that's been in decline.

"This is all about the neighborhood, this is all about bringing back their quality of life and building up home ownership for them," said Kevin Cox with Neighborhood Inspections.

Charles Jordan is ready for something happen.

"Bout time, it's been long enough, this neighborhood has gone down and we need something new out here," he said.

The city demolished a couple of homes on Tuesday; the rest will be done this week. The Housing Authority has five other homes that have been renovated and one that they’ve built; all those houses are for sale.