Tuesday, December 8, 2009

$17M in HOPE VI funding sought for Jacob Price redevelopment

The Housing Authority of Covington (HAC) has submitted an application for $17 million in funding through the federal HOPE VI program for the redevelopment of the Jacob Price Homes housing project in the city's Eastside neighborhood.

The redevelopment would redesign the 1930s-era, 6-acre superblock into a mixed-income community of 97 rental units, including 77 two-story townhouses, 8 single-story senior cottages, and 12 flats above 9,600 square feet of retail space.

Lynn Street would be extended through the site to reconnect the original street grid, and new utilities, sidewalks, street lighting, street trees and 12,000 square feet of landscaped open space are planned.

Twenty homeownership units would be built on vacant parcels in the surrounding neighborhood.

HAC first explored the redevelopment of the housing project in 2004, citing high maintenance costs due to the age and obsolescence of its buildings.

The Eastside Neighborhood Association originally fought the proposal, but, in 2006, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development approved HAC's revitalization plans.

Consultants Gilmore Kean, LLC have assisted in the recent revitalization planning, which has had the full involvement of Jacob Price residents, elected officials, and community partners.

As demolition continues through next July, current Jacob Price residents will be given the option of a Section 8 voucher or relocation into another HAC community.

"The residents of Jacob Price Homes are very excited about the plans to improve the living conditions on the Eastside," said Jacob Price Resident Council president Brenda Ramsey. "The plans that I have seen are wonderful. I am ready to get this done."

HAC has selected Integral as its development partner.

"We, at Integral, are absolutely elated, and look forward to our partnership with the Housing Authority of Covington," said Daryl Jones, Integral vice president of development.