Thursday, June 7, 2012

City Heights redevelopment ramping up

Public charrettes to create a master plan for the redevelopment of Covington's City Heights could begin later this month or early next month.

A preliminary look at what the development of a plan might entail was unveiled by the Housing Authority of Covington (HACOV) at a May 23 meeting of neighborhood residents.

Unlike HACOV's redevelopment of the Jacob Price Homes under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) HOPE VI program, the redevelopment of City Heights would implement Choice Neighborhoods Initiative (CNI) planning grants. Developed in 2011 to address the perceived shortcomings of HOPE VI, CNI is a holistic, comprehensive process that addresses not only housing, but also the needs of the people and the neighborhood as a whole.

By the end of August, ideas collected from the charrette will make their way into a working paper and preliminary concept. A preliminary plan will be completed by November, with a final plan due for completion by January 2013.

That final plan will be used to support grant applications for both CNI funding and Low Income Housing Tax Credits.

Only four out of 42 applicants were awarded funding out of this year's $110 million CNI budget, and it's anticipated that between five and seven applicants will be awarded grants in late 2013 as part of next year's funding cycle.

The 366-unit City Heights complex, originally known as the Ida Spence Homes, was built in the early 1950s on the former site of a Benedictine monastery and vineyard.

Image: Bing Maps

Previous reading on BC:
Covington housing authority seeking bids for final phase of HOPE VI program (5/1/12)
Covington HOPE VI project breaks ground (4/2/12)
$17M in HOPE VI funding sought for Jacob Price redevelopment (12/8/09)