LAKE WORTH, Fla., Feb. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Lake Worth Community Redevelopment Agency, along with its eighteen Neighborhood Stabilization Program 2 Consortium Partners, is proud to announce that it has successfully expended more than 100% of its $23,237,500 grant within the three year grant period ending February 11, 2013.
While giving its residential Target Area a considerable aesthetic facelift, assuring affordable home ownership and rental opportunities to its beneficiary families, the target area has been relieved of many destabilizing elements to include dilapidated and illegally-partitioned homes, and foreclosed and vacant structures serving as havens for illegal activity.
The Consortium's efforts lead to hundreds of contracts with local businesses while creating/saving more than two hundred (200) full time equivalent jobs over the grant period. In keeping with requirements to show preferences to low income residents (earning not more than 80% of the Area Median Income) the Consortium expended more than twenty-six percent (26%) of eligible subcontracting dollars with Section 3 businesses and residents, greatly exceeding the HUD goal of ten percent (10%). Additionally, the Consortium provided counseling and training opportunities for interested businesses and residents, resulting in sixteen individuals, including five Section 3 residents receiving certificates in Green Building Techniques from Palm Beach State University.
By the grant end date, the Consortium had rehabilitated or constructed ninety-seven (97) housing units, composed of seventy three (73) homes for sale and twenty four (24) rentals, while acquiring sufficient properties to output and additional fourteen (14) properties over the next couple of years. The grant also was able to provide for much needed City infrastructure including new water, sewer and gas lines and sidewalks where previously none existed.
The CRA's signature project, the Arts Lofts, is now complete. These for-sale units contain up to 2650 sq ft of livable space which includes a downstairs work studio and an upstairs living area in the heart of downtown Lake Worth.
Further, the Consortium was able to facilitate the upcoming development of a 55-unit affordable, green building rental development, not only to help alleviate the area's need for safe, affordable rental housing, but to use land which has long been vacant and underutilized property on one of the City's Gateways. Collectively, the Consortium has removed approximately one hundred (100) foreclosed properties from the County's backlog, putting as many as one hundred forty two (142) housing units back on the tax rolls, while affecting a total of one hundred sixty six (166) properties, greatly exceeding its goal of one hundred (100) housing units and thirty (30) land banks.
Joan Oliva, (Executive Director) Lake Worth CRA has experienced first-hand, the dramatic changes that the City has undergone the past few years. "It is such an honor to work with so many wonderful people, both with our partners and with all these truly deserving new residents. With hard work and an inordinate amount of patience, especially from our partners, we were able to spend all the grant funds, on time, abiding by all the regulations, rules and time frames. I am so thankful for the wonderful main partners we have in Adopt-a-Family, Habitat for Humanity, the City of Lake Worth, Stuart and Shelby, Housing Partnership, Housing Leadership Council, Urban Group and Cannatelli Builders. Without their expertise, guidance and never-give-up attitude, we were able to provide much needed, clean, safe, affordable housing to over 100 families and individuals. I love this City and truly believe we have made a difference in the lives of the citizens who live here and who now call it home.
The City's rebirth is truly underway with new homes and new homeowners now experiencing the unique and charismatic qualities of this City. Nowhere else can you enjoy an authentic downtown, a newly renovated beach complex, cultural arts and the sense of community that exists in Lake Worth. This was an amazing opportunity for us and I am so thankful to those who gave their time, effort and passion and hope we can continue to work together and be the catalyst for more positive change here in the City."
Although the deadline for expending the grant funds has now passed, all income generated through the sale of units is reinvested into the City of Lake Worth.
Bios of some of the new home owners living out their dream!
Jill Karlin 219 North L Street #100
Jill Karlin is born in Boston, but found her home in Florida in the mid 1980s. A Renaissance woman, Jill is an artist, yoga instructor, cookie maker, and sales woman. Her art works have been shown and are in collections the world over, including an exhibition in New Delhi, India hosted by patron Biki Oberoi and The Oberoi Hotel.
Darryl Sturrup 219 North L Street #110
Darryl Sturrup was born in Florida and raised in Seminole Circle, a housing project in Lantana. He was raised by his mother and began developing a love for music at a very young age. Darryl moved to Canada in his early twenties and recorded his first studio single "Forever" which sold over 10,000 copies. Darryl continues to capture hearts with his song writing capabilities.
Nancy Jack 219 North L Street #104
Ms. Nancy Jack wanted to buy in Lake Worth because she loves Lake Worth's casual, funky personality and its affordability. Ms. Jack moved here from Los Angeles and found many of the same attributes like - beach, sun and diversity - without the high prices. Lake Worth offers affordable living within walking distance of a beautiful beach, shops and restaurants . Ms. Jack was a writer in L.A. but now practices law in Florida. Ms. Jack states, "Lake Worth helps me keep in touch with my creative side."
Anthony Reindel 111 Lake Avenue #1
Anthony just recently graduated school in Ohio with a fine arts degree. Mr. Reindel wanted to thank everybody at the Lake Worth CRA for helping to put a roof over his head and giving him the opportunity to own a beautiful home in these tough times… A gift that is greatly appreciated by him… and his parents.
Jose Diaz 20 South D Street
Mr. Diaz is a Lake Worth local who works as automotive mechanic. He would like to become more involved with his neighborhood association and work closely with his neighbors to decrease crime in the South end of Lake Worth.
For more information or to apply for one of our homes, please contact the CRA by visiting www.lakeworthnsp.org or call us at 561-493-2550.
SOURCE Lake Worth Community Redevelopment Agency