HUD No. 12-RVI-20
January 10, 2012
HUD AWARDS $300,000 CHOICE NEIGHBORHOODS PLANNING GRANT TO METROPOLITAN HOUSING ALLIANCE IN LITTLE ROCK
Focus is on Transforming Sunset Terrace, Elm Street Public Housing Sites and Surrounding Neighborhood
LITTLE ROCK - U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Regional Administrator Don Babers joined U.S. Representative Tim Griffin and Little Rock Mayor Mark Stodola today to announce that Metropolitan Housing Alliance has received a $300,000 HUD Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grant. Little Rock is one of 13 cities nationwide that received this funding to begin grassroots efforts to not only revitalize distressed public housing developments, but the neighborhoods surrounding them as well.
"All across the country, local planners are serious about rolling up their sleeves to transform distressed neighborhoods into choice neighborhoods," said HUD Regional Director Babers. "With this grant, the community can now begin the comprehensive planning needed to turn the distressed housing in the SE Little Rock area into a viable and sustainable mixed-income community that supports positive outcome for families, including quality housing and education, economic development, jobs, transportation and health services."
Mayor Stodola said, "I'm excited about the opportunity this grant brings for Little Rock to build up its communities. Great cities have great neighborhoods and the Choice Neighborhoods Grant will give us the resources to help this community grow. The City of Little Rock and the Metropolitan Housing Alliance build more than houses and structures; we build community."
This planning effort covers a two square mile area that includes the Sunset Terrace and Elm Street public housing sites. It is affected by high crime, physical isolation, poor schools and suffers from a vacancy rate that is 3.6 times higher than the county rate. Over the course of 18 months, the planning process will examine how the distressed Sunset Terrace and Elm Street housing sites and the surrounding neighborhood can be transformed into a neighborhood of opportunity. MHA will integrate this planning effort with other redevelopment processes underway, including the Department of Education's Promise Neighborhoods Program, HUD's Neighborhood Stabilization Program and HUD's Preferred Sustainable Communities program.
Key partners include Quadel Consulting Corperation (Planning Coordinator); Volunteers of America National Services (VOAN); University of Arkansas at Little Rock (UALR); Central Arkansas Library Systems (CALS); Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, City of Little Rock and Central Little Rock Promise Neighborhoods.
Background on Choice Neighborhoods
Building on nearly 20 years of success through HUD's HOPE VI Program, Choice Neighborhoods links housing improvements with a wider variety of public services including schools, public transit and employment opportunities. The program is a centerpiece of the Obama Administration's interagency Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative, a collaboration between HUD and the Departments of Education, Justice, Treasury and Health and Human Services that supports local solutions for sustainable, mixed-income neighborhoods. This Federal support provides a significant incentive for the local community to take critical steps to create viable neighborhood transformation.
Congress approved the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative with the passage of HUD's FY 2010 budget, and in FY 2011 provided $65 million in competitive grants to assist in the transformation, rehabilitation and preservation of public housing and privately owned HUD-assisted housing. Congress recently appropriated $120 million for the program for Fiscal Year 2012. Choice Neighborhoods widens the traditional pool of eligible applicants beyond public housing authorities to include local governments, nonprofit organizations, and for-profit developers (who apply jointly with a public entity).
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet and espanol.hud.gov. You can also follow HUD on twitter @HUDnews, on facebook at www.facebook.com/HUD, or sign up for news alerts on HUD's News Listserv.
FY 2011 Choice Neighborhood Planning Grantees
||EXISTING PUBLIC AND/OR ASSISTED HOUSING SITE
AREA OF TOWN
|Cincinnati Metropolitan Housing Authority
|Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority
|Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority/Ohio State University/City of Columbus/National Church Residences
||Near East Side
|Housing Authority of the City of Little Rock
|Southeast of Downtown
|Housing Authority of the City of Meridian
||George M. Reese Court
|Opa-Locka Community Development Corporation
|Rockford Housing Authority
|Housing Authority of the County of Sacramento
|Housing Authority of Savannah
||Robert Hitch Village and Fred Wessels Homes
||East Savannah Gateway
|City of Springfield/
Springfield Housing Authority
||Marble Street Apartments, Concord Heights, Hollywood Apartments I & II
|Suffolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority
||Parker Riddick/Cypress Manor
|District of Columbia Housing Authority/
Resident Management Corporation
||Kenilworth Courts/Kenilworth Parkside
Resident Management Corporation
|Housing Authority of the City of Wilson/City of Wilson