Wasteland no more? Weeds may make way for crops and tiny lots may get tiny houses

By Tammy (Weekend with Dee) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

By Tammy (Weekend with Dee) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Many thousands of small pieces of unusable city land are always for sale with no takers, but officials are cultivating new approaches.

They expect to soon announce a program to grow crops, said Ted Anderson, executive director of the Land Bank of Kansas City.

And also, what better to do with tiny lots than put tiny houses of 220 square feet on them? That is also in the works.

The crops would end costly mowing and could even bring the city in a little money, he reported Tuesday to the mayor and city manager.

To start with, the plants would involve 200 acres broken into individual scattered plots of 2 acres or more, he said.

It is based on a program already used in Detroit, he said, where they grow hybrid poplar trees, lavender, ginseng, and penny crest, a plant used for biofuel.

The poplar wood is used for things like closet poles, pallets and more, he said.

Mayor Sly James, who often says the city does not do enough to promote accomplishments, gave a suggestion/order: “I would suggest there be a big hoo rah rah around it; Make a big deal around it so maybe it attracts some more attention and gets noticed.”

The tiny house initiative is underway, Anderson said, with a group interested in putting them on city-owned land that was the site of a mobile home village.


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