Friday, March 18, 2011

HUD Awards the Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grants

Today, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan announced that 17 communities across the country will receive Planning Grant funding through the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative. As we’ve mentioned previously on our blog, the goal of the ground-breaking Choice Neighborhoods Initiative is to transform communities experiencing extreme poverty, violence and unemployment into sustainable, mixed-income neighborhoods with quality services, good schools, affordable housing and access to jobs and transit. The first ever Choice Neighborhood grantees will share a total of $4 million in Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grants while six other communities are selected as finalists to compete for approximately $61 million in Choice Neighborhood Implementation grants. The finalists for the Implementation grants are: the City of Boston, the Housing Authority of New Orleans, the Housing Authority of the City of Seattle, the Housing Authority of the City of Tampa, McCormack Baron Salazar, Inc. (San Francisco), and the Preservation of Affordable Housing Inc. (Chicago). 
HUD anticipates Choice Neighborhoods will serve as the "centerpiece" of the Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative(NRI). Led by the White House Domestic Policy Council, White House Office of Urban Affairs, and the Departments of Housing and Urban Development, Education, Justice, Health and Human Services and Treasury, the Initiative is charged with the responsibility of developing and executing the Administration’s place-based strategies to revitalize neighborhoods. NRI recognizes the need for federal resources to stand behind local efforts to build communities that support success from cradle to career. Given the overwhelming number of submissions(119 for CN Planning Grants and 89 CN Implementation Grants), communities across the country clearly appreciate the importance of these efforts as well. 

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