Abandoned Homes Dot Cleveland Map : Blog Of The Nation Abandoned homes plague communities across the Rust Belt.  Is it a given that they should be torn down, or can they be saved?  And, perhaps, used for other purposes that can contribute to a community's character, instead of detracting from it?
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Abandoned Homes Dot Cleveland Map

An abandoned house in Cleveland, Ohio. Jon Eckerle hide caption

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Jon Eckerle

Bits of Talk of the Nation are in Cleveland for today's show, and last night, Jon Eckerle took my boss, Sue Goodwin, for a tour of the town. He's a community activist and real estate agent in Cleveland who's passionate about homes like the one in the above photo he took on their tour. He describes it:

This is a home at East 65 and White in Cleveland. It is a foreclosed abandoned home in an area where it is not that uncommon to see abandoned homes and vacant lots. This one is a little unique in that the aluminum thieves must of used a ladder to get the second story metal.

Eckerle's interested in considering these abandoned properties and the ramifications of their existence. For instance, what does it do to a neighborhood when homes like this stand? Should they be torn down, or used for other things? Turns out, there are a lot of creative ideas for turning this plight -- also seen in cities across the rust belt -- into positive things for the community, from greenhouses to cold storage to vineyards. More on this in our second hour today.  Join us!