Written by Wes Schmidgall   
Wednesday, 09 January 2013 00:00

PEORIA — With the recent completion of phase three of the Harrison Homes redevelopment project, the Peoria Housing Authority is helping needy individuals and families move into new housing units.

Phase three of the $6 million project includes 35 new affordable housing units that are a combination of townhomes and duplexes. The construction of the housing units was completed Dec. 14, just under two months past the original completion date goal of Oct. 22.

“They are one-bedroom and two-bedroom (housing units),” said Peoria Housing Authority Community Relations Manager Sherneka Cagle. “There are a few three- and four-bedroom townhouses available as well.”

PHA has been reviewing applications and finding qualified tenants to live in the new units. Several individuals and families have already moved into the new housing units in the subsidized housing complex. The public housing agency hopes to occupy all of its new housing units this month.

“Within January, we hope we will be able to get all of them used up,” said Cagle.

In addition to the 35 energy-efficient housing units, a playground was constructed, as part of phase three.

PHA contracted CORE Construction for the construction of the phase three housing units. 

The new additions give residents of the subsidized housing complex a sense of pride in their community, said PHA C.E.O. Brenda Coates.

“They’re just people, just like we are,” said Coates. “They want that American dream. They do have some motivation. They want to see something different. And that’s what we really hope this new neighborhood will continue to bring about.”

The plan’s goal is to move people out of buildings constructed in the 1930s into more modern homes, PHA spokeswoman Meghan Lundeen said. By moving into new buildings, the PHA hopes to bring down maintenance and utility costs, Lundeen added. The purpose of the six-phase Harrison Homes redevelopment project is to move people out of buildings in the subsidized housing complex that were constructed in the 1930s into more modern homes. By replacing its aging buildings with new buildings, PHA hopes to bring down utility and maintenance costs. 

Phase 2 and 2B of the project were completed in the summer of 2011. Phase 2, a 26,800-square foot development, consisted of the construction of a maintenance/office building as well as 28 affordable housing units, including a mix of senior, family and ADA accessible apartments. Phase 2B consisted of six units, including a townhouse building with two three-bedroom units, three two-bedroom units and a two-bedroom bungalow. All of the Phase 2 and 2B housing units are occupied.

PHA plans to start construction for phase four of the project in 2014.

“As of right now, we’re going to move forward with the next one (phase) in 2014,” said Cagle.

The specifications and location of the units that will be constructed in phase four have not yet been determined.

“We’re not sure on site specifics yet,” said Cagle. “We will just be moving forward either with vacant land that is already at Harrison Homes or vacant land in other community areas and building on that land.”

Anyone interested in getting on the housing unit waiting list can print off an application at the PHA website at peoriahousing.org, pick up an application in person at the PHA facility at 100 S. Richard Pryor Place in Peoria or call PHA at (309) 676-8736.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 08 January 2013 11:48
 
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