Community stepping up to combat vacant structure fires in North Waco

Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - 1:32pm

The Waco Community Development group is working to put an end to the number of vacant structure fires in the North Waco area.

"This is our neighborhood," said Alexis Christensen, Community Organizer of the Waco Community Development organization.

An increase in vacant structure fires has Waco community leaders looking into what can be done to eliminate these occurences. Just last week, an apartment complex and a vacant house caught fire within about 30 minutes of one another. The apartments were already on the city's list for demolition.

"Two actual buildings involved in the fire. The buildings were unoccupied as the property has been vacant for several years now," said Assistant Fire Chief Chris Pechacek on the day of the fire.

Subcommittees of the Waco Community Development Task Force have been formed to look into the what can be done to decrease the number of vacant buildings in the area.

"The task force formed because of vacant structures in our neighborhood. And, so we really want to be able to figure out what the process is, either have the homes be rehabilitated or to be able to see them be changed for good use in our neighborhood," said Christensen.

The organization is also working closely with the city, including the local fire and police departments and legal services.

"We're learning their processes so that we can help hold them accountable," said Christensen.


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