New BTW redevelopment plan emerges - WRBL

New BTW redevelopment plan emerges

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A new redevelopment plan for the BTW apartments is emerging one month after the Liberty District revitalization project fell through.

For the last several weeks, the Columbus Area Housing Authority has been working to meet a June 13th deadline to apply for tax credits that will partially fund the project.

The new plan has two phases. The first phase will be to build a new 100-unit senior citizen apartment complex at Chapman Homes, about 10 minutes away from the current BTW site. "The new vision would be to build a hundred units for 55 and older and it just so happens that we have about 100 residents in BTW that would qualify," said Housing Authority CEO Len Williams.

The second phase of the project would use part of the old Liberty District model, which calls for 100 mixed-housing units to be built at the current BTE site and use the south end of the property for commercial use.

Williams said now that a viable option is on the table, he has started meeting with residents. "They are very excited. You know they were very disappointed when the previous plan did not work out."

The first phase is expected to cost 15 million dollars and start by the end of 2014 if the authority receives the tax credits. The second phase will be around 16 million dollars and begin after the first is completed. Williams said the Authority will contribute around 8 million dollars for the projects.

Williams will be meeting with city council on Tuesday morning to show them the new plan and to ask the city to pledge 2.5 million dollars towards it.

Williams said getting the tax credits is very competitive. Once the application is submitted, it will be November before the Authority knows if they have been approved.

Sydney Cameron

Sydney joined the WRBL news team in December 2011 after working as a freelance reporter in Washington, D.C. More>>

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