Euclid database seeks to fill vacant properties (The News-Herald)

Euclid city officials have created a system in the hopes of reducing the amount of vacant land within the city.

An online database was designed to organize information about 104 city-owned parcels of vacant land and allow individuals to submit an application for purchase.

The website includes direct links to aerial photos of the land, size and location of the unused property, as well as a link to the application form.

Previously, if someone was looking to purchase land, they would need the address or parcel number to locate it on the County Auditor’s website, said Paul Beno, zoning commissioner and land bank coordinator for the city.

Although a majority of the properties available are smaller parcels ideal for neighboring home owners to purchase, some of the larger, more desirable parcels that are available can now be browsed in the database without needing to know the specific location first.

“This just makes it more user friendly,” Beno said. “It eliminates the hassle of trying to figure out who owns it.”

Along with organizing the data, the prices of the parcels were lowered to maximize the opportunity to sell them, he said. “Our original pricing policies were too high and we needed to get the info more readily accessible.”

Euclid resident Steven Harper purchased a plot next to his home and has since transformed it into a diverse garden.

The parcel is valued by Cuyahoga County at $24,000 but Harper said he only paid $1,000 to purchase it. Although Harper initially didn’t realize that the taxes he would pay on the property would reflect the county’s valuation, he said he believes the yearly cost will still be worthwhile.

“Well I think it’s really worth it to have more space and it gives me somewhere to challenge my gardening skills,” Harper said.

He purchased his plot before the online database was available, but was impressed with the improvement of the procedure.

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