Abandoned Woodlawn block transformed into 30 news homes worth millions

The Cook County Land Bank Authority (CCLBA) is celebrating a major development in Chicago’s South Side.

The CCLBA worked with five Black developers in Woodlawn to transform an abandoned block into 30 new homes now worth $8.8 million.

"We're building wealth and giving access to capital to the residents of that community. So that's very, very impactful," said Bonita Harrison of Sunshine Management.

Sunshine Management is one of five Black-owned companies that redeveloped the site at 63rd and Evans, about a half-mile from the campus of the University of Chicago. Harrison says it would not have happened without the CCLBA, overseen by county Commissioner Bridget Gainer, helping to clear the title to what had long been abandoned parcels of property, with unpaid property taxes and city water bills.

"The purpose of the land bank was to come in, clear those back taxes that no one was paying, clear the title to the property, find developers. And now we're about 1,500 properties in, you know, hundreds of millions of dollars of added value," Gainer said.


"With the land bank's assistance, they came in, they cleared title, they cleared up the red tape. Now, it's just a direct sale. So, I buy it for $6,000. I add value. And now it's an $8 million project," Harrison said.