Building off of the success of vacant and abandoned buildings survey as well as the Laying the Foundation for Strong Neighborhoods Study, the City must begin the process of identifying the condition of many of the vacant and abandoned properties. An assessment of the condition of these properties will help the City and its housing partners decide which must be included in the Acquisition and Demolition Program, which should be protected for historic reasons, and which might be appropriate for homesteading, among other examples. This information must be fed into the Property Management Database so that property condition can be cross-referenced with tax information, inspections violations, and police calls to make more informed decisions. The City should consider using income generated from the Vacant Property Registration Ordinance (VPRO) to fund this effort.
The Laying the Foundation for Stronger Neighborhoods report provided critical details on the condition of Trenton’s neighborhoods. The next step is to understand how well Trenton’s neighborhood characteristics align with the demands of residents in the region. A regional employer partnership should begin with a study of employees housing preference as well as an identification of opportunities in which the City of Trenton can work with employers to meet those housing needs.