There are hundreds of abandoned and derelict houses in Winnipeg. Now the city is planning to use its new vacant and derelict building bylaw to seize a property without giving any compensation to the owner.

It will be the first time a city has ever taken this kind of action in Canada.

It is a day John Hanyecz has been waiting years for. It means the abandoned house next to his could soon be gone.

The owner of 369 Home Street was ordered to make repairs to his property by a provincial court in January of 2007. But according to city documents that hasn't happened yet, so the city is seizing the property.

"If you're going to leave your properties derelict and not take care of them, the city of Winnipeg will do everything necessary to protect the community," Councillor Dan Vandal told CTV News. "In fact we are willing to take over the property, and that's what we've done."

The city intends to hand the property over to next door neighbor William Murphy. He's outlined plans to pay for the demolition of the building and any outstanding taxes, so he can redevelop it as a play area for foster children in his care.

The owner still has 90 days to make repairs.

City administrators say there are at least three other properties they plan to seize this fall.