"I'll never do a house in the suburbs again." Developer Joe Ventimiglia credits the Detroit Land Bank Authority with "opening the door" as he invests in Detroit's neighborhoods.
Right now, at the corner of East Grand Boulevard and Saint Paul, Detroit's Island View neighborhood is buzzing with excitement about the redevelopment happening at Joe's row of townhomes, and the jobs the project has created in the community.
As part of the reconstruction, Joe has embraced Lorraine Griffin, a woman who has lived in the row of four townhomes for decades. Her family stayed after everyone else had gone, keeping their homeownership dream alive as the units surrounding them fell apart. Now Joe is making sure his redevelopment includes improvements to Lorraine's home as well.
The project is also changing lives for families in the surrounding area. At least 14 men are receiving hands-on training and steady work rehabbing the row of townhouses as well as another site that Joe owns a few blocks away. With plans to start a construction training program, Joe, who owns the architectural company Acacia Drewno, is promising his crew and other neighbors like them, will have work for years to come.
Learn more about the vision for the townhomes and hear Lorraine's take on the transformation by clicking here.
Plus, check out an update here from Fox 2's Roop Raj, about how the project is creating jobs in the community.