NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – Big changes may be coming to Dixwell Avenue. The city of New Haven announced a proposal to redevelop four blighted properties there. The goal is to bring life back to the former hot spot area.

“I see a lot of change,” says David Britto, who has lived in the neighborhood for 50 years. “It was an access. Anything you wanted was right here.”

Britto says it is now the opposite, with blighted buildings scattered with graffiti and littered streets.

“It went down,” says Britto.

Monday afternoon city and area officials announced the new proposal to help revitalize the area. 

Mayor Justin Elicker says he wants to use $1.3 million in federal funds to redevelop four run-down buildings, including the old Monterey Jazz Club, as well as two occupied multi-family homes. 

The city’s livable city initiative will vote on the proposal Wednesday. If approved, it goes to the Board of Alders. They will likely vote on the property purchases next month. 

The city says the community input meetings will likely happen in the next few months following those votes.

Elicker says by acquiring the properties from private owners, they can assure the community’s opinions are heard.

“This is going to be key to beautifying this neighborhood and making sure people feel the history of it is celebrated today,” Elicker said.

This project is part of a larger effort to invest in the neighborhood, including 70 units of affordable housing and a community center.

Long-time residents say this project will help restore the area to its former glory.

“People need a place to live you know,” says Britto. “Lot of people get ignored when it comes to housing it seems like to me nothing is being done. Now if you revitalize this, this going to bring people to you.”

“I always pray for my community and when I see this happening that’s when I know my prayers have been answered,” Jesse Hameen II, who has lived in the neighborhood for decades.”