Baltimore City is embarking on an ambitious $74 million plan to tear down row homes in derelict and vacant blocks and neighborhoods. It’s estimated the city has upwards of 16,000 vacants. Today we want to get some context for these plans - what policies and practices make eliminating blight successful for city economies and the people who live in them? And what locks communities out of economic growth and change? Alan Mallach joins Tom in the studio. He’s a city planner, writer and senior fellow with the Center For Community Progress. While a senior fellow at the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution, Mallach wrote a study, Laying The Groundwork For Change: Demolition, Urban Strategy, And Policy Reform which looked at best practices for demolition, examining cities like Philadelphia, Detroit and Cleveland. He was director of housing and economic development in Trenton, New Jersey for 9 years and his most recent book is Rebuilding America’s Legacy Cities: New Directions for the Industrial Heartland, Mallach is also working with Baltimore City to evaluate the Vacants To Value Program.