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Milwaukee's community renewal program: Urban renewal techniques
(May 1964)

IV. Redevelopment,   pp. 22-35


Page 22

I V REDEVELOPMENT
The factors that favorably affect public and private enterprise's decision to tear down the old and re-
build anew are numerous. Of considerable importance is the municipality's constructive support and assistance
in furthering this kind of activity called redevelopment. The different kinds of tools and techniques which the
city can employ to implement this support and assistance vary with the types of redevelopment that may take
place and with the kinds of situations in which redevelopment may occur. This chapter of the report discusses
these various techniques, some of which are already being used with beneficial effects. Techniques to assist
the redevelopment of Milwaukee via primarily private market mechanisms, via municipally assisted projects,
and via federally assisted projects are treated as are the kinds of city areas in which these forms of assistance
are appropriate. Major problems are cited and remedies suggested.
MUNICIPAL TOOLS AND TECHNIQUES FOR PRIVATE REDEVELOPMENT
Redevelopment refers to the replacement of old buildings by new ones on the same general site. Private
redevelopment is defined as the assembly and redevelopment of land by private enterprise. For example, a
developer purchases two properties on which are situated a couple of rooming houses. He then razes the rooming
houses and constructs a new apartment building in their place. In this context redevelopment of land in govern-
mentally assisted renewal projects is not private redevelopment since the land is not assembled by private enter-
prise.
Most rebuilding activity takes place ona normal "property here - property there" basis by private enter-
prise. This is the natural way cities are rebuilt. Project type redevelopment has its place only when and where
this investment activity cannot take place in sufficient degree or manner to rid blighted areas of substandard
housing and other recognized problems. The fact that private redevelopment isa relatively common phenomenon
demands that full consideration be given to the tools and techniques the city is using and can use to assist and
guide it.
Many factors affect private redevelopment, some of which are beyond municipal control and some of
which are not. These latter factors, since they can be controlled or at least affected by municipal policies,
assume the form of tools or techniques which should assist and guide private development. They include(1) master
planning, both on a community and on an area basis, (2) zoning, (3) city code enforcement, (4) urban renewal
policies and action, (5) public improvements, (6) community facilities, (7) property taxation, (8) economic
subsidy of private redevelopment, and (9) treatment of social problems.
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