By OnMilwaukee Staff Writers   Published Nov 06, 2012 at 9:53 AM

Mayor Tom Barrett has announced Milwaukee has been chosen as one of the top 20 finalists for the Bloomberg Philanthropies' Mayors Challenge, a competition created to inspire American cities to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges and improve city life.

Milwaukee was selected based on its HOME GR/OWN plan, an idea to transform foreclosed properties into community assets that improve public health and spark economic opportunity. The idea would earmark a portion of city-owned properties and lots to be revitalized as urban agriculture and urban homesteading centers.

A winner will be awarded the $5 million grand prize in spring 2013. In addition, four runner-up cities will receive $1 million each.

Learn more about the Mayors Challenge here.