The BlockAugust 16th, 2012 by Bad Guy Joe
Somewhere in an urban part of New Jersey, an entire set of city blocks laid abandoned.
Sitting empty for years on end, this motley collection of abandoned buildings were soon to become the victim of the bulldozer. This 'mixed use' area contained small homes, emptied small apartments, and light industrial buildings. The city they were located in had made the vain, probably corrupt decision to use eminent domain to lay claim to all of these properties (along with many more), and to force residents and businesses out of the area. Their goal, of course, being to hand the property over to 'developers' (i.e. politically connected cronies) and create a new tax base to perpetuate their own perceived awesomeness for decades to come.
Thus far, their political dream has become a civic nightmare for the residents of this city. Services have been cut as the tax base dried up. The stalled development project has not moved one inch forward in years. Meanwhile, addicts and squatters have taken to breaking into these buildings repeatedly. The fire department is sent over to lock them up, and a week later someone else has broken in.
While one might assume this nightmare will end 'when the economy gets better', that could still be years off.