Stimulus Dollars To Pay For Housing Update

November 07, 2009|By Julie Scharper | Julie Scharper,julie.scharper@baltsun.com

About 270 dilapidated public housing units will be renovated and equipped with energy-efficient fixtures with $66 million in federal stimulus funds, city officials announced Friday.

The money will be used to renovate about 240 individual vacant public housing homes scattered throughout the city and 30 traditional public housing units, officials said.

"People are not only committed to making a difference in their communities and transforming their communities, they also want to make sure we are accountable and responsive to them so they can live their lives with their families in a safe environment, in a clean environment, in a stable environment," said Mayor Sheila Dixon in a news conference at a newly renovated home in the Harwood community.

The renovation program, which will create 92 jobs, will be managed by the city housing authority. The homes will be renovated according to historic preservation guidelines and will be equipped with energy-efficient lightbulbs and plumbing fixtures that limit water consumption, among other green features.

Of the city's 1,000 individual public housing homes, about 300 are vacant and in need of renovations, said Ashley F. Lommers-Johnson, associate deputy director of the housing authority.

The city has been awarded a total of $310 million in stimulus funds to date. About half the money for the public housing project came from grants for capital improvements and the remaining half was granted to the city in a competitive process.

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