The vast majority of commercial and industrial properties and vacant parcels are not owned by West End residents. They are not owned by Black people period. To the extent that the businesses are operated by Black people, we are most often renting, sometimes for decades. This fact is contributing to the wealth gap.
A list of underutilized and/or available properties should be compiled and a support system immediately put in place to help individuals get prepared to purchase property and use it for sustainable projects. An emphasis should be placed on funding and supporting projects that strengthen the neighborhoods and are not at odds with residential and family-driven uses. Given the reality that these projects can be costly because of years of physical neglect and/or environmental contamination, additional funds need to be identified and deployed into these properties to make the transactions financially viable.
Who needs to act? You; Commercial and Industrial Developers; Financial Institutions; Governor Andy Beshear; Kentucky State Legislators; Philanthropy