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Marathon Petroleum will buy homes near its Detroit refinery

"Oil barrels" by IFPRI is licensed with CC BY-NC-ND 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Homeowners living near the Marathon Petroleum refinery in Southwest Detroit are being paid to leave. The company is offering to buy homes from residents.

Refinery officials say residents will be offered a base price of 70-thousand dollars for their homes. State representative Tyrone Carter says the program will stabilize the area.

“Marathon has been a great neighbor,” said Carter.

During last year’s polar vortex, residents made a series of complaints against the refinery, expressing concerns over strong odors. Marathon agreed to compliance regulation, paying the State of Michigan about 80-thousand dollars over the incident.

Neighboring resident Emma Lockridge says the company met with activists to draft the buyout program.

“I’m very proud and happy that Marathon will also remove those blighted homes which are just a horrible eyesore and very terrible on the psyche,” Lockridge said.

Marathon’s buyouts are expected to start next year.