CHA, 38 others’ proven effectiveness earns them continued flexibility
CHICAGO – May 2, 2016 – (RealEstateRama) — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has announced that the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) is one of 39 Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) across the country granted Moving to Work (MTW) agreement extensions through 2028.
HUD created Moving to Work as a demonstration program to provide housing authorities with flexibility to implement local strategies to better serve public housing residents. Participating agencies receive exemptions from specific public housing and voucher rules and more flexibility in the use of funds. Through MTW agency innovations, HUD is able to learn new ways to address local community needs, better integrate public housing into the broader community and provide public housing residents and voucher holders greater access to opportunity.
In a letter announcing the extension of CHA’s MTW agreement through 2028, Lourdes Castro Ramirez, HUD’s Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing said: “Throughout the next 12 years of the MTW Demonstration, we look forward to learning from the innovative work of MTW agencies. We are confident that locally-driven strategies will continue to identify creative solutions to serve the affordable housing needs of our nation’s communities.”
CHA CEO Eugene Jones, Jr. said: “I am honored by HUD’s recognition and confidence in the vision CHA has laid out for the future of affordable housing, mixed-income developments and supportive residential programs here in Chicago. Since my appointment as CEO of the CHA, the development of strong and vibrant communities throughout Chicago has been my priority, and this 10-year extension will allow us the stability and flexibility necessary to support the specific needs of CHA residents on a local level.”
CHA was first invited to participate in HUD’s MTW Program in 2000, which allowed CHA to explore innovative programs and initiatives specific to Chicago’s unique neighborhoods. Under this agreement, HUD approved the Authority’s Plan for Transformation in 2000, which included the rehab or replacement of 25,000 units of public housing, including the demolition of 14,000 high-rise or dilapidated apartments identified by HUD. As of December 2015, CHA had completed 22,386 units – or 90 percent – of the replacement of public housing units, added thousands of housing vouchers to its program and helped Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) participants attain housing in 73 of Chicago’s 77 communities.
Among the innovative programs made possible only through the flexibility offered by the MTW:
· Casa Querétaro, completed in January 2016, CHA’s first mixed-income development in the Pilsen community that provides 30 affordable units and 15 CHA units for families in a new apartment building.
· Continued redevelopment of Parkside of Old Town, where this spring a total of 106 apartments in two buildings (36 public housing, 27 affordable and 43 market rate) in the Cabrini Green redevelopment area.
· Acquisition of three buildings in the Lakeview and West Ridge communities from Presbyterian Homes that will bring 111 rehabbed apartments to low-income seniors and families.
Over the next two years, an additional 1,000 units of permanent CHA housing are planned and we expect to accomplish this and more with our partners at the City of Chicago and the State of Illinois as we continue to explore innovative solutions to meet the city’s need for affordable housing and opportunity for all residents.
Matthew J. Aguilar| Senior Manager of Communications
Phone 312.935.2646 | Fax 312.935.2647
Chicago Housing Authority | 60 E. Van Buren | Chicago, IL 60605
maguilar (at) thecha (dot) org| www.thecha.org