Increased demolition budget approved to help beautify Columbus

Increased demolition budget approved to help beautify Columbus

COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Eyesores in a community can ruin neighborhood pride. But Columbus is working on a plan to clean up the community by getting rid of some of the dilapidated properties.

A neighbor says a home on Ivan Court has been abandoned for years now. With a new and improved budget for demolition just approved by the Columbus council, the neighbor hopes this home will finally be cleaned up or gone.

Rickey Taylor has lived on Ivan Court for more than 15 years. The house next to him has been abandoned and neglected for at least the past five of those years.

“Like I said, I’m worried about snakes and stuff over there,” Taylor said.

He said the home is an eyesore and he wants the city to fix it.

“One of the biggest problems we’ve got throughout the community is with properties that have become uninhabitable," said Columbus Mayor Skip Henderson. "Either a fire or just gross neglect. They’ve turned into vacant properties that are good for nothing except attracting criminal elements that want to hangout there and do bad stuff.”

In the new 2019-2020 fiscal year budget, Henderson dedicated $1 million to a demolition budget, which is much larger than the normal allowance.

“Now, we’re going to take care of some of these incredibly dilapidated trailer parks," Henderson said. "Some of those things are just awful. So, we’re going to take those down but we’re probably going to have 500,000 to 600,000 leftover to go after some of the individual properties.”

Although the house next door to Taylor’s isn’t on the demo list yet, he’s hopeful the new budget will help the rest of the community and eventually reach his neighborhood.

“Well, just look at it," Taylor stated. "Do I need anymore reason?”

“By taking these down it beautifies the community," Henderson noted. "It makes it safer and it enhances the neighborhoods where it’s been detracting from them.”

If you’ve got an eyesore in your neighborhood, the director of Inspections and Code said you can call 311 to notify their office.

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