Birmingham Mayor Woodfin, GROWTH by NCRC Deliver Affordable Homeownership
Birmingham Mayor Woodfin, GROWTH by NCRC Deliver Affordable Homeownership in Historic Belview Heights in Ensley.
By Anthony Cook
Affordable homeownership: Three new homeowners are looking forward to getting the keys to their new homes after a ribbon-cutting Thursday at the newly developed Oak Hill community of Belview Heights in Ensley.
The ceremony was the culmination of an objective by Mayor Randall Woodfin to revitalize Birmingham communities through affordable homeownership. It was made possible by a $25 million public-private partnership between the city of Birmingham and the NCRC Housing Rehab Fund, also known as GROWTH by NCRC (Generating Real Opportunities for Work Through Housing).
“Today not only do we celebrate homeownership,” Woodfin said. “We celebrate the power of investing in our communities.”
The new project, located at the former site of the Camelia Terrace Apartments near the 1100 block of 51st Street Ensley, features affordable single-family homes ranging from 1,227-1,700 square feet, starting from $179,900.
In January, Birmingham City Council voted to allocate $540,000 of American Rescue Plan funding to preserve affordability and offset rising construction costs resulting from the pandemic, according to a press release from City Hall. Homes that would typically range $200,000-240,000 are being offered for sale from as low as the $170,000s.
GROWTH by NCRC provides homeownership opportunities for low- and moderate-income communities and people, with a focus on communities of color. In five years, GROWTH has invested in nearly $150 million nationwide. GROWTH by NCRC also provides workforce development and housing counseling through local partnerships with community organizations in the areas they serve.
Ed Gorman, managing director for the NCRC Housing Rehab Fund, compared the public-private partnership to a unicorn.
“We’re a private equity fund, started by a nonprofit doing affordable homeownership,” he said. “That doesn’t exist on a national basis anywhere else.”
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