A Call to Take Action on Blighted Properties

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WILKES-BARRE, Pa. -- The sight of run-down housing units in the Wilkes-Barre area has angered city residents and a city councilwoman is trying to raise awareness to spark change.

City Councilwoman Beth Gilbert says she's tired of seeing run-down and condemned housing units around Wilkes-Barre. On her Facebook page, she says that until the issues are resolved, she's going to post pictures of blighted houses every day.

Those we spoke with believe it's a smart tactic.

A property on the corner of East Northampton and South Welles Streets isn't a welcome sight to neighbors. Vacant and dilapidated buildings have become a common issue in Wilkes-Barre.

"There's a lot of behavior going on inside these buildings that people don't know about. I just think they should knock it down," Taiwan Bradley said.

"Every street you see four abandoned houses, seriously," said Kelvin Awah.

Wilkes-Barre Councilwoman Beth Gilbert is fed up with seeing so many blighted properties in the area. By using social media, she's trying to prompt change and help get rid of all the properties that are hurtful to eyes.

According to her Facebook page, she plans to post pictures of condemned structures hoping that city administration will take action.

Wilkes-Barre residents hope Gilbert's idea helps.

"It looks really bad. It would be nice to see where you take your kids to the park and have a nice area to take them to," Giselle Espino said.

At one apartment building, there are three units, all of which are condemned. We ran into some people who are looking for an apartment in Wilkes-Barre. They're frustrated by the sight of this because it takes up so much space and has no potential.

"I feel like they should knock them down or rebuild new houses, or fix them up and rent them out for people that are having a hard time finding spots to live. You have people in shelters and people waiting on Section 8 when they got nice houses and all that stuff and it's hard to get an apartment," Christopher Sparks said.

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