Lincolnville officials support affordable housing to keep long-term residents

Posted June 20, 2017 04:39 am

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Lincolnville officials are supporting the creation of more affordable housing and expanding housing repair funding, in part as a way to help keep long-term African-American residents from leaving the neighborhood.

The Lincolnville Community Redevelopment Area Steering Committee gave a nod at its meeting this month to changes to the CRA’s 2013 redevelopment plan, which includes proposals such as supporting development of a Community Land Trust and combining housing repair programs.

“The intent is to have long-term residents, in many cases, age in place,” said Nicholas Noloboff, chair of the CRA’s steering committee.

The CRA, which is guided by state law, formed in 2013 after a study found “economic distress and physical deterioration” in the neighborhood, according to the city of St. Augustine. Florida lawmakers recently proposed legislation to phase out CRAs, but that effort died.

The plan amendment also proposes restricting on-street parking and curbing development that’s out of character for the neighborhood. The steering committee’s governing body, the St. Augustine Community Redevelopment Agency, will consider the amendment in July, said city Historic Preservation and Community Development Planner Erin Minnigan.

The Lincolnville Community Redevelopment Area uses a portion of property tax revenue to make improvements in the area, as guided by the Lincolnville Redevelopment Plan. Inclusion in the plan doesn’t guarantee ideas will come to fruition, but they become a possibility, Noloboff said.

The city hired Strategic Planning Group for $50,000 to create the recent plan amendment.

The effort to amend the plan included getting community feedback from residents about how to preserve African-American heritage and keep long-term residents in place.

“One of the major findings of…

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