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Partners Break Ground on City-Supported Housing for Seniors and People with Special Needs 
An assortment of affordable housing advocates went for a walk in the woods last week near the Holston Hills neighborhood. The forested slope will soon be the location of The Village at Holston Court, a housing development for older adults and people with disabilities. 

Plans for Village at Holston Ct

Homesource of East Tennessee will construct the project beginning with two, three-bedroom supportive housing units, followed by 24 apartments and an additional 21 units and a community center. 

Village at Holston groundbreaking

As one remembers at events of this nature, it takes a village for a project like The Village at Holston Court to reach the moment of ground breaking, even the ceremonial kind. 

Homesource board director Herc Ligdis kicked off the proceedings and thanked the several entities whose work and funds contributed to the effort: TennCare, Neighborworks, Tennessee Housing Development Agency, the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the City of Knoxville.

Jeremy Heidt of THDA announced that the agency had just approved a grant to Homesource for $500,000, which allows them to begin construction on Phases 1 and 2 at the same time. 

“Knoxville has a great reputation for partnerships that create housing for people with disabilities,” said Ed Ellis of HUD during his turn at the podium. He noted that the risks of becoming homeless are high among people who need special medical services. When affordable housing options are limited, some people in these circumstances can find themselves on the streets.  

Homesource CEO Chris Osborn said that the Village’s residents will likely be moving from their home into an apartment, or switching from another apartment to the Village. Others will be TennCare CHOICES program participants who are refered to the Village by the Medical Care Organizations that contract with TennCare. 

“They have a flood of CHOICES members that need affordable housing,” he said. 

The City of Knoxville contributed $100,000 of CDBG funds to Homesource to purchase the vacant property in 2016, and assisted their purchase of adjacent property (a vacant, tax-foreclosed, City-owned lot) through the City’s Homemaker program. The City will also provide $325,000 in HOME funds to assist with construction phases 2 and 3.

“Partnerships between the City’s Community Development Department, Community Housing Development Organizations like Homesource and the federal government allow us to be responsive to our residents’ needs for affordable, quality rental housing,” Mayor Rogero said. “The federal HOME and CDBG funds give us the flexibility to target them to meet the needs of Knoxville residents and are essential in helping us meet our goal of developing safe, affordable and accessible housing that is impervious to market fluctuations.”

mayor speaking at groundbreaking event

Mayor Rogero went on to ask Jennifer Stansberry, attending on behalf of U.S. Congressman John Duncan, Jr., to express her appreciation for the representative’s past support of HUD funds and encourage him to vote to maintain that funding in future federal budgets. 
Posted by ptravis On 08 June, 2017 at 3:07 PM