North Linden man leads by example to restore neighborhood

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A man who’s spent the last decade taking care of the his North Linden neighborhood property says he’s tired of landlords letting vacant properties sit and go to waste.

Nathaniel Wilkins compiled a list of nearly 20 properties in his neighborhood and has many ideas for how they could better serve the community he calls home.

“I take pride in my property. I love my property,” Wilkins says. “I’m seeing the neighborhood just be wiped away.”

He showed NBC4 the broken windows at the empty house sitting next to him. He said he cut the grass a few times but has stopped. On Friday, it was in need of a trim.

“The owner doesn’t come out to cut the grass and maintain the property,” Wilkins tells us. He says he’s had friendly conversations about his frustrations with the owner.

A few houses down from Wilkins, Fitumi Bako purchased a rundown property and is restoring the property with the intent to re-sell it.

“Wherever we see vacant houses, abandoned properties, it bothers us,” says Bako, who purchases properties with her brother. “We want the community to look nice. And we started this project so we can have people move back into the community and clean up.”

The Columbus City Attorney’s Officer tells NBC4 complaints about properties must be submitted on a case-by-case basis to 311 and are handled based on the threat they are to the surrounding neighborhood.

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