Growth Report: Reimagining Philly's Vacant Land

Last week, the Redevelopment Authority (RDA) released a report on vacant land in Philadelphia, revealing the grand scope and cost of the city's vacant properties, and a new plan to manage the land in a more uniform manner.

Here are some key statistics from the report:

  • There are currently an estimated 40,000 vacant lots located in neighborhoods throughout the city.
  • It is estimated that vacant land accounts for a citywide $8,000 loss in property value per household.
  • Vacant land is most commonly located in North and West Philadelphia.
  • The land adds up to 3,555 acres that are valued at nearly $2 billion.
  • The city controls just 9,000 of the 40,000 properties, the remaining 31,000 are privately owned.
  • It is estimated that maintaining the vacant land costs the city $20 million each year.

Read more statistics here.

Managing the vacant land could result in new housing, permanent open space and more land for urban agriculture. Development depends on a number of factors, but addressing the issue, and providing this information to the public, is step one towards change.

Check out this video about the Urban Tree Connection for inspiration on turning vacant land into community-building havens: