June 7, 2005
A groundbreaking ceremony today marked the final phase of the Piedmont Housing Alliance's Tenth and Page Street Neighborhood Revitalization. For a lot of local residents, today was a step in the right direction. "I am blessed to be standing here today to see the new development and accomplishment of my neighborhood," said PHA Member and Tenth and Page Street Resident Mary Nightengale.
Fellow resident Chuck Chisholm agreed. "I feel really good about it and I'm glad it's working out this way," he explained.
Chisholm was born and raised on the corner of Page and Tenth Street, and often feels issues facing his community are overlooked. But the rehabilitation project has given him a new sense of hope. "It makes me want to believe the City is beginning to address some of the problems of the minority community," he said.
Those problems include crime, something the area has been known for. "Tenth and Page notoriously had a reputation over several decades of being a very tough place," says PHA Executive Director Stu Armstrong. "There were boarded up or very dilapidated structures, as well as some loitering activity and illegal activity." That activity is expected to significantly decrease with the rejuvenation project underway.
"I think people might not have a negative image of Tenth and Page a couple of years from now as they did a couple of years [ago]," said Chisholm.
The mission of the project is to economically and socially rejuvenate the community by upgrading its housing stock, increasing affordable housing opportunities, and reducing crime, all of which is expected to be accomplished over the next few years.
Thanks to grants, pledges, and loans, PHA's work now consists of 41 units valued at over $6 million.