City Transitions Birdtown Nuisance Property Into State-of-the-Art Single Family Home | The City of Lakewood, Ohio

City Transitions Birdtown Nuisance Property Into State-of-the-Art Single Family Home

May 23, 2016

The city of Lakewood has taken a former four-unit apartment nuisance property in the Birdtown neighborhood, and transformed it into a single-family home complete with solar panels.

All this while retaining the charm of the historic neighborhood.

The property at 2147 Dowd Avenue was foreclosed upon in 2012 and transferred to Fannie Mae in 2013. That’s when the city acquired the property, and using federal HOME funds, began a complete overhaul.

City Architect Mike Molinski finalized architectural designs for the project, bringing this unique property into the 21st century by incorporating energy efficiency and modern amenities while retaining the level of historic character expected in this neighborhood.

“The addition of solar power makes this project truly special,” said Mary Leigh, the city’s programs manager in the department of community development.

“This is part of our city’s aggressive housing strategy. Typically, the city doesn’t invest in real estate, but these federal funds allow us to intervene in the market where we can have the highest impact.”

The city of Lakewood has contracted with Bold Enterprises to install the panels. Once connected to the grid, the solar panels will provide the future homeowner of the property approximately $15,000 savings on their electric bill during the next 20 years.

The city is partnering with LakewoodAlive to provide an opportunity for Lakewood residents to walk through the home and learn more about how solar power can be retrofitted to compliment the renovation of historic and older homes. In addition, LakewoodAlive is hosting Knowing Your Home: Solar 101 at the house at 10 a.m. June 11.

Since 2010, the city has strategically invested federal funds into the Birdtown neighborhood in an effort to offset challenges resulting from the 2008 housing crisis. Residential projects funded by the city of Lakewood also include the 2126 Quail and 12217 Plover single family rehabilitation projects and the 2070 Dowd new single family home constructed by Habitat for Humanity.