Saturday, May 14, 2011

Phoenix apartments to house low-income residents

A downtown Phoenix apartment complex on the brink of foreclosure will now be used to house up to 300 low-income and formerly homeless residents.

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors on Wednesday decided to use $1.5 million of federal stimulus money to purchase Campaige Place, a single-occupancy complex at Second Avenue and Jackson Street. The property opened in 2003 for low-income residents. But the owners could not make payments anymore, and the federal government put it up for auction.

Human-services professionals consider supportive housing a cost-effective way to help stabilize people who are facing homelessness. Providing them with social services through community groups costs less than it would to pay for emergency services that the chronically homeless seek, they said.

"It's going to be a big boon for people (facing homelessness) to help them get their lives together," Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox said.

In about 18 months, low-income residents and the formerly homeless will be able to rent units in Campaige Place, downtown Phoenix's only multifamily supportive housing, specialized housing that makes social services available to residents.

"It's an ideal property in an ideal location," said Ursula Strephans, community-development supervisor at the county's Human Services Department. Residents have access to public transportation, and they can easily get to the Human Services Campus at 12th Avenue and Madison Street to receive more supportive services, she said.

The county will use part of approximately $10 million it received from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in 2009 for its Neighborhood Stabilization Program. The county uses this money to work with community partners to buy homes in or near foreclosure, fix them up and put them up for sale or rent to low-income families.

Arizona Housing Inc., a non-profit organization, will manage the property.

The goal is to get people out of shelters and into housing communities such as Campaige Place so they can start supporting themselves again, said Mark Holleran, Central Arizona Shelter Services director.

"There's a window of opportunity here," Holleran said.

by Michelle Ye Hee Lee The Arizona Republic May. 12, 2011 12:00 AM

Phoenix apartments to house low-income residents

Real Estate News

HootSuite - Social Media Dashboard