Initially, started at the end of 2011, the DCC’s nuisance abatement program was created to fill an enforcement void in the city by bringing private citizens and pro-bono attorneys together to file “private” nuisance abatement civil suits. DCC staff would investigate, report, and file the law suit on behalf of the affected citizen. The effort resulted in nearly a dozen private law suits and dozens of blighted structures s being renovated or torn down. For example, the DCC facilitated the civil suit against the owners of an open, vacant, and dangerous property located at 17926 Woodward called the Gomar. After suing the owners twice, the property is now a parking lot. Another example was the two story motel that once existed at the corner of Merton and Woodward. Not wanting to face civil action, the owner tore down the property and it is now a parking lot for the La Vogue apartments.
Since its inception, the DCC’s Nuisance Abatement program has morphed into a program that empowers Detroiters’ by teaching citizens how to investigate, report, and file their own private nuisance abatement law suits. The DCC usually conducts several sessions per year with many sessions done at the request of individual community groups.