State takes over troubled housing complex

Officials will have to relocate about 100 people after the state was forced to take over two downtown Syracuse public housing complexes.

The Harrison House and Townsend Tower were built in the 1970s to provide housing for low- and moderate-income families. For years, they've struggled with low vacancy rates, crime, mounting debts, poor management and code violations.

Now, the complexes owe nearly $10 million in back mortgage payments and more than $2 million in city and Onondaga County property taxes.

Each complex has about 200 units, but only 40 units in each are occupied. The state is asking the Syracuse Housing Authority to manage the buildings and begin plans to move the remaining tenants.