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In Hartford's North End, from blight to beautiful

Hartford Land Bank celebrates first homeownership property.

HARTFORD, Conn. — The wood-frame house at 78 Martin Street in Hartford is more than a century old. 

Now it has been totally renovated and what was once an eyesore is now ready for a family to move in. The house was re-done by the upstart non-profit called the Hartford Land Bank, a group that takes blighted properties and makes them over for the benefit of the neighborhood and homeowners-to-be. 

Yahaira Escribano, the finance and programs officer at Hartford Land Bank said, “Our role and our mission is to acquire blighted and abandoned properties from the city of Hartford – revitalize them and bring them back to life and (this house) is a prime example of that.”

The two-bedroom, two-bathroom blue slate-painted house that sits on just under a quarter acre on Martin Street has an asking price of around $200,000. 

Aruanan Arulampalam, the CEO of the Hartford Land Bank and candidate for mayor in this fall's election, said, “we need a lot more of this, Hartford has the lowest homeownership rate in the entire state of Connecticut, we have a 24 percent homeownership rate.” He then added, “This is all redone, it’s a beautiful home.” 

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Before a celebratory ribbon cutting to recognize the work of the all the teams involved to make the house a home, Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin said, “This is exactly what the Land Bank was set up to do and we are really proud to celebrate today.” 

There are plans in the pipeline for Hartford Land Bank to renovate around 10 more homes in Hartford neighborhoods. Escribano said, “our community members deserve this, nothing less than this, so we are very excited to replicate this throughout the entire Northeast Neighborhood and all over Hartford.”

Jimmy Altman is a reporter at FOX61 News. He can be reached at jaltman@fox61.com. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


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