Building Blocks Focuses Efforts on Danville Street - - ABC13

Building Blocks Focuses Efforts on Danville Street


Reporter: Heather Rosenbaum | Videographer: Jonathan Merryman

Danville, VA -- The Danville project Building Blocks has its sights set on one street to give the homes that line that road a little sprucing up.

In the history of Building Blocks, they have fixed up and sold nearly 20 Danville homes. Officials say that this project not only solves the problem of dilapidated homes, but improves the neighborhood around them. 

From the outside they look like average homes, but house after house on Ross Street have gotten a little extra attention.

"They have been totally rehabilitated and now they are for sale," said Earl Reynolds, director of community development.

It's all through a city program, Building Blocks, which buys vacant houses in distress, within neighborhoods in need, and gives them a make-over.

"Without question it improves the quality of life for the entire neighborhood," said Reynolds.

Currently concentrating on the Westmoreland community, Building Blocks has four current projects on Ross Street, and they hope to acquire two more, the most ever on one road. 

"You want to concentrate your efforts so that you bring up the entire block," said Reynolds.

"It definitely brings up the property value in the neighborhood. The neighbors see the houses in the new condition and it tends to make them want to upgrade theirs," said Norma Brower, redevelopment specialist.

While some homes require more TLC than others.

"Go in and rehab the entire house. You are speaking of the bathrooms, the kitchens, the bedrooms. We do a total rehab," said Brower.

Building Blocks spends $60,000 on average to fix them up but sells them for face value.

"The sale price of the house typically will be above the normal sale prices in the neighborhood therefore it brings up not just the quality of life but also it brings up the values of the neighborhood," said Reynolds.

As of right now, they are only focusing on the Westmoreland community. Starting July 1, they will look all over the city to fix up houses.

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