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New Sheppard Square Opens to Residents

LOUISVILLE – Today, Congressman John Yarmuth (KY-3) and Mayor Greg Fischer announced that Louisville’s $96.5 million redevelopment of Sheppard Square is now home to new residents in the Smoketown neighborhood.

The revitalization of the 16.5-acre Sheppard Square is Louisville’s third HOPE VI project. The program used $22 million of federal funding to leverage $74.5 million in additional investment and resources to replace public housing built in 1942 with mixed-use, affordable housing developments. The project also helped attract an additional $45.6 million in other investments to the area.

Yarmuth urged the Louisville Metro Housing Authority to apply for the HOPE VI grant for Sheppard Square and worked with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to ensure its approval.

“Today is a watershed moment for the residents of Sheppard Square, and it’s the beginning of a new economic future for Smoketown,” Yarmuth said. “I was proud to help secure the federal investment that, along with private-sector buy-in, is helping transform this area into a place of optimism and prosperity for both residents and businesses.”

Construction began in 2013 and is expected to be complete in December 2015. The site of today’s press conference is the first of four on-site phases.

“Thanks to $22 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and to all of our public-private partnerships, this project has not only revitalized Smoketown with safer and better housing, it also is Louisville’s first sustainable neighborhood with environmentally sensitive infrastructure and energy efficient components,” Fischer said.

This community will have coordinated community-wide waste, recycling and composting pick-up services, and will be 100 percent smoke-free.

There are 310 total units on the footprint of the former Sheppard Square housing development, including 228 public housing and tax credit rental units, 59 market-rate rental units, and 23 homeownership units. Offsite, there are 144 units, including 54 rental units built in partnership with the Downtown Family Scholar House, 9 single-family homes built in the Smoketown neighborhood through the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, and 81 public housing rental units in scattered locations throughout Louisville Metro. All rental and homeownership units will be constructed according to Enterprise Green Community (EGC) standards, which have been shown to deliver significant health, economic and environmental benefits. In addition, Louisville Metro Housing Authority has applied for LEED-ND (LEED for Neighborhood Development) certification for the community, a system for rating and certifying green neighborhoods.

“What has been achieved in Louisville is a real success story under the HOPE VI program.  HUD’s $22 million funding will transform and improve outcomes for Sheppard Square public housing tenants and the community,” said HUD Southeast Regional Administrator Ed Jennings, Jr. “There is a sea of need that persists here, as well as in the state of Kentucky, the Southeast and our nation. Now with HUD’s innovative and transformative approach to these issues – HUD programs such as Choice Neighborhoods, Promise Zones, and the Rental Assistance Demonstration – we’re transitioning toward investing in strategies to address interconnected challenges – housing decay, crime, lack of educational prospects and economic connections – all of which will help families going forward.”

New green space at the corner of Lampton and Preston streets will be available to Meyzeek Middle School students and area residents for recreational and athletic activities.

Thirty two of the on-site rental units will be located in the historic Presbyterian Community Center building, which was donated to the Housing Authority by the Presbyterian Church. This building will be adaptively rehabbed into housing for the elderly and disabled, including units for veterans.

“Fifth Third is proud to partner with the Louisville Metro Housing Authority and Ohio Capital Corporation for Housing to produce high quality affordable housing in the Smoketown neighborhood of Louisville,” said Catherine Cawthon, President of Fifth Third Community Development Corporation. “Fifth Third is proud to be a partner in the redevelopment and revitalization of Sheppard Square and its impact on the community as a whole.”

The HOPE VI initiative was launched in 1992 to transform distressed public housing developments into mixed-income, mixed-use developments, breaking up concentrations of poverty, promoting resident self-sufficiency, and revitalizing entire communities.

For more information about leasing Sheppard Square units, contact CT Associates at 502.561.0078.

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