North Philly is full of boarded-up homes, and those homes are about to get a bit of a makeover.
There’s a new city initiative called the Community Life Improvement Program, but most people call it CLIP. As part of this program, painters go around Philly and stencil, paint, or cover up boarded properties.
ABC spoke with Richard Cook, one of the painters about the homes and he shared with them that, “When you’re driving through the neighborhood, you don’t just see a lot of abandoned houses. We’ve had people think it’s an actual house.”
His co-worker, Pedro Rodriguez, echoed his statement and said that “Being boarded up is just like a sense of emptiness.” By working on these homes, they are hoping to brighten up the area.
When painting, workers paint the doorknobs, frame the windows and mail slots on the doors. ABC reports that the whole project takes about 15 minutes and that Rodriguez and Cook have painted more than 300 homes in the area.
The city looks at it as a simple way to fix up the area’s eyesores. Thomas Conway, the Deputy Managing Director for the city told ABC that, “A lot of times, there’s not a homeowner, or they don’t have the funding to do that, so this is a temporary fix.”
Conway also reports that the city is getting a lot of positive feedback on the improvements. However, although there is more positive feedback, they’re always skeptics.
The city is planning on expanding this program by cleaning up vacant lots. Conway told ABC that, “We have 11 youth coming on board from the most violent sections of the city.”
Conway added, “We give them an opportunity, provide them with some skills, some job experience, and also a paycheck to get them off the streets and doing something productive.”
If you want to report a boarded-up home for the program, call 215-686-6396.