LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Land bank programs have become a popular way for cities to acquire abandoned property and do something productive with it.
In the city of Little Rock there are dozens of properties up for grabs. There is a housing need for those with physical disabilities in central Arkansas. With a mission to build barrier free homes, 30 duplexes are about to break ground to fill that gap.
When Bo and Robert Springer heard about the Little Rock Land Bank Commission they had a vision.
"Meet the needs of someone's necessity that's out of their control and those are people who have mobility needs," they said.
The couple has a son who is blind and know that finding housing for someone with mobility needs can be difficult.
"To be able to go to the kitchen and cook any meal that they want underneath a counter of a stove or underneath a sink to wash their dishes or to the cabinets,” the Springers said. “Also, meet the needs of them to take a shower where they can roll right in. That they will have the independence and it gives them self-esteem, and it gives them freedom.”
The Springers have a plan to turn vacant or tax-delinquent properties to productive use.
"This unique and totally different concept," Dr. Grover Evans said.
Dr. Evans, a paraplegic, is helping the Springer's with their building plans. He hopes these affordable rental homes are just another step towards equality.
"They have the right to have the same opportunity as anyone else, to go and participate and be part of, I just want them to be able to reach that potential in life," Evans said.
Little Rock City Director Joan Adcock said the Land Bank has been in existence since 2007 and she's excited to see these empty lots and abandoned properties turned into new construction.
"This is very specialized housing, this housing is going to be for a definite growing population in our city," she said.
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