New London blight is impacting future downtown business - WFSB 3 Connecticut

New London blight is impacting future downtown business

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The blight in downtown New London has become a problem for businesses (WFSB) The blight in downtown New London has become a problem for businesses (WFSB)
NEW LONDON, CT (WFSB) -

It appears the Whaling City is not in “ship-shape.”

Downtown merchants said they are upset blighted buildings are in disrepair and the image they project are not pretty.

In downtown New London, you’ll see peeling paint, moldy, dirty looking walls, and even some graffiti painted windows on Bank Street.

Downtown New London is the heart of the business district for Charlotte Hennigan, who helped start the Blight Committee a year ago.

“I hear it all the time. That’s what people say. What happened Charlotte? What happened to downtown? The stores are all empty,” she said.

Whether you’re on State Street or Bank Street, the district’s two main streets are empty, which is another negative sign for prospective tenants.

At the back of the former Salvation Army Store on Bank Street, people have dumped garbage and put graffiti on the walls.

Kenyon Haye is the city’s blight enforcement officer. He said the problem behind the former Salvation Army Store is not caused by the property owner or its former tenant.

“That’s one thing that’s just a challenge is a general disrespect that some people have for other’s property,” Haye said.

Thankfully, targeted blight problems are being handled, but the city says sometimes the issues have to go to the courts, and those legal hurdles take time to overcome and make right.

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