As reported in Kenosha News and The Journal Times
MILWAUKEE — Urban and rural blight refers to buildings that have been abandoned and left to decay.
Studies dating as far back as the 1920s have in various ways linked blighted properties to marked increases in neighborhood crime and reduced economic activity. Most studies focus on abandoned residential properties, but Milwaukee-based real estate developer Phoenix Investors noticed a pattern between its large-scale industrial redevelopments and crime reduction.
Phoenix Investors’ core business is the revitalization of former manufacturing facilities throughout the United States, and as such has significant experience in urban and rural blight abatement. Phoenix Investors is the largest owner of industrial real estate in Wisconsin.
Phoenix Investors’ portfolio spans 21 states. A 2018 national survey conducted by NREI ranked Phoenix Investors as having the 28th largest total industrial real estate portfolio.
“Over a decade ago our core focus shifted to the renovation of large former industrial plants and I began to see a correlation between our redevelopments and crime reduction,” said Frank P. Crivello, Chairman & Founder, Phoenix Investors. “This pattern became quite clear across all states and impacted urban and rural blight in a similar way.”
Phoenix Investors has redeveloped multiple properties in Flint, Michigan, which brought hundreds of jobs to the community. Partnering with the Genesee County Land Bank so that it could win a $500,000 grant from the Michigan State Housing Development Authority, in 2017 Phoenix Investors donated $50,000 for a blight reduction project abutting its redevelopment of the former Delphi Plant.