A two-day gathering to discuss urban blight is scheduled for Aug. 14-15 in Macon.
The event will be hosted by Mercer University’s Center for Collaborative Journalism.
The aim is to “bring together community advocates, technologists, journalists, policymakers and students interested to exchange ideas and share lessons about combating blight and repurposing abandoned parts of our communities,” according to a Mercer release.
“Open property and housing data is just one example of how putting more information in the hands of the public can help create real change,” said Ellen Miller, executive director of the Sunlight Foundation, which is helping host the meeting.
Experts will present mapping and visualization projects, examples of successful tactics for foreclosure prevention, tools to help identify blighted and vacant homes, and creative ways to reclaim public space and ways to use technology and data to create more thriving communities.
“In our survey of the Macon community, blight emerged as one of the top concerns of residents,” said Tim Regan-Porter, director of the CCJ. “Our conversations with others involved in housing and urban development reveal that Macon is not alone, and we can all benefit by sharing our experience in combatting blight.”
The effort to address blight also includes an initiative to map affected homes in Macon-Bibb County and is part of an upcoming series of stories in The Telegraph and on GPB.
The gathering, called Unblight, is funded by a grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Registration fees are $25 for students and $55 for others.
For more information go to http://sign up.unblight.org/