$38 Million for Central Park Revitalization
Jan 14, 2010 -
In one of the most significant investments for the Tampa Bay region under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Tampa Housing Authority is receiving $38 million to revitalize the Central Park Village area and transform it into a new community that will uplift this historic neighborhood and create hundreds, if not thousands, of jobs. Since last year, Congresswoman Kathy Castor has pressed officials from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to award this money to the residents in the heart of Tampa through Tampa Housing Authority. Just last week, Castor urged HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan to invest in redeveloping Central Park Village and bolster our economic recovery.
In addition to the $38 million for Central Park, Neighborhood Lending Partners is receiving $50 million for housing initiatives in Pinellas and Pasco counties. Pinellas County residents, for example, will benefit from homebuyer assistance and rehabilitation assistance, including soft-second mortgages at 0 percent interest. Pinellas County and the Housing Finance Authority of Pinellas County also plan to redevelop vacant properties and sell them to eligible homebuyers, a move that could boost property values in the surrounding neighborhood.
“Today, Florida is receiving $348 million, more than any other state, including more than $100 million for the Tampa Bay area,” Castor said. “President Obama clearly recognized the quality of our community efforts and the extent of our needs.”
“Now all of the pieces are in place to follow through with our community’s commitment to revitalize the neighborhood that connects East Tampa, Ybor City, Tampa Heights, the Channel District and downtown Tampa,” continued Castor, who as a Hillsborough County Commissioner strongly supported revitalizing the property. “Rebuilding this important area will raise property values, put hundreds of families into safe, affordable housing and create new employment opportunities throughout the Tampa Bay area.
“Redeveloping this neighborhood will bring a new sense of hope to our community,” Castor said. “In addition, the job-creation prospects are significant. Roofers, electricians, painters, carpenters, haulers and other construction workers will be hired to turn blueprints into buildings. This is the true intent of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act: creating jobs and spurring economic development.”
Tampa Housing Authority is committed to contracting with local businesses as well as hiring THA residents.
In a project called Encore, Tampa Housing Authority is working with the city of Tampa and the Banc of American Community Development Corporation on sweeping plans to transform the Central Park Village public housing complex and the adjacent neighborhood into a thriving mixed-use community, with retail and residential space. The 28-acre site is off of Nebraska Avenue, between downtown and Ybor City. The $38 million will redevelop the former Central Park Village and other vacant land in the area. The venture also includes the acquisition and rehabilitation of more than 120 vacant or foreclosed residential properties in the area, as well as an expansion of down-payment assistance and loan initiatives to help families.
Nationwide today, $2 billion in Recovery Act funds was awarded by President Obama to states, local governments and non-profit housing developers under the Neighborhood Stabilization Program.