Reclamation is the act of returning something to a former, better state. Land reclamation might involve razing a strip mall and planting crops.

Reclamation is the noun form of the verb to reclaim. Most people involved in reclamation want to reclaim something out of a sense of moral or environmental duty. Since re- means "again," it makes sense that a reclamation involves restoring something to its former glory, especially something that has gone to the dogs. Anything that's fallen on hard times is a good candidate for reclamation.

Definitions of reclamation
  1. noun
    rescuing from error and returning to a rightful course
    “the reclamation of delinquent children”
    synonyms: reformation
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    type of:
    deliverance, delivery, rescue, saving
    recovery or preservation from loss or danger
  2. noun
    the conversion of wasteland into land suitable for use of habitation or cultivation
    synonyms: rehabilitation, renewal
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    re-afforestation, reforestation
    the restoration (replanting) of a forest that had been reduced by fire or cutting
    urban renewal
    the clearing and rebuilding and redevelopment of urban slums
    type of:
    the act of restoring something or someone to a satisfactory state
  3. noun
    the recovery of useful substances from waste products
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    type of:
    recovery, retrieval
    the act of regaining or saving something lost (or in danger of becoming lost)
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