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Seattle Housing one of six finalists for HUD's Choice Neighborhoods Implementation Grants

$23.9 million grant would fund Phase I redevelopment at Yesler Terrace

SEATTLE — March 18, 2011 — U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan announced today that Seattle Housing Authority is one of six finalists selected to compete for approximately $61 million in Choice Neighborhood Implementation Grants.

Last November, the agency submitted a grant application through HUD’s Choice Neighborhood Initiative requesting $23.9 million for the first phase of redevelopment at Yesler Terrace.

Initial redevelopment would be focused on a broad area including Yesler Terrace and extending eastward toward 14th Avenue and southward toward Little Saigon. The grant, should it be awarded to the agency, would help transform the community through comprehensive education and employment programs, housing opportunities and support for economic development.

Specific improvements in Seattle Housing's proposal includes new housing on the 12th Avenue and Yesler Block, renovation of the Baldwin Apartments on 14th Avenue as well as streetscape improvements along 12th Avenue and support for small-scale local retail. The agency would also work with nonprofit Historic Seattle to direct some of the funds toward rehabilitation of the historic Washington Hall performing arts building.

For a more detailed explanation of what Seattle Housing Authority plans to accomplish with the potential grant money, read: Seattle Housing submits Choice Neighborhoods grant application requesting $23.9 million.

Building on the successes of the HOPE VI Program, HUD's Choice Neighborhood iniative was established to transform distressed neighborhoods into viable and sustainable mixed-income neighborhoods by linking housing improvements with appropriate services, schools, public assets, transportation, and access to jobs.

HUD expects to announce grant awards by the end of September.