Governments' Lighter Side

Newark's sweet real estate deal

As part of a unique Valentines Day special, Newark, N.J., is planning to sell 100 vacant parcels of city-owned land to area lovebirds. The most appealing part of the deal is the price tag – only $1,000 per parcel.

“For young families trying to find a place to put down roots, we want to give this place as an option,” Baye Adofo-Wilson, the city’s deputy mayor for economic development and man behind the plan, told The Wall Street Journal. “We want them to know Newark is welcoming.”

Officials say the plan will help take care of two municipal problems at once – vacant, blighted land will once again be inhabited, and more residents will increase the downtown property and income tax base, according to the paper.

Eligible couples may be gay or straight and don’t necessarily have to be married, according to program materials. However, couples that buy property must build homes on the lots, and lots will be awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis. Couples do not have to be residents to be eligible. 



The program’s website emphasized the sale is not meant for developers or investors, rather, “This sale is exclusively for couples who are looking to live in Newark.”

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What's Governments' Lighter Side?

It is an irreverent take on local and state government news.

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Derek Prall

Derek Prall is a professional journalist who has held numerous positions with a variety of print and online publications including The Public Manager magazine and the New Jersey Herald. He is a 2008...
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