FLINT, Mich. -- Grass experts, sociologists and community leaders are teaming up on a three-year project in Flint, Mich., to test the idea that well-maintained lawns and parks help revitalize neighborhoods.
There are thousands of abandoned homes and vacant lots scattered throughout its neighborhoods.
They're a costly headache to keep from getting wildly overgrown, with grass that can grow several feet high before being mowed.
Thom Nikolai, a Michigan State University turf-grass specialist, is leading the study.
Researchers want to measure economic effects.
And they want to learn more about how community groups, for example, keep up vacant land and abandoned homes.
The project, with its community involvement, fits the spirit of Flint's broader revitalization efforts.