News & Event
By Mary MacDonald- August 14, 2019 10:30 pm
Karen Santilli is the CEO and president of Crossroads Rhode Island, the state’s largest nonprofit that works with homeless individuals and families.
On Thursday, along with two other human services partners, the organization will launch a campaign designed to find suitable housing for 38 families who are going to lose their vouchers for housing within the next 100 days.
Santilli spoke to the Providence Business News about the population experiencing homelessness in the state.
PBN: What is the homeless population of Rhode Island and how much of this is centered in Providence?
SANTILLI: Over the course of a year, on average, the number has been pretty steady, between 4,000 and 4,100 people will experience homelessness. We used to be able to ask for the ZIP code of their last residence. This is a couple of years old, but the last time we asked, 51% of people newly coming into homelessness were from Providence. So 49% were from the rest of the state.
To read the complete article, visit Providence Business News
Courtesy of Providence Business News
By Mary MacDonald- July 10, 2019 10:30 pm
Jennifer Hawkins is the executive director of ONE Neighborhood Builders, a nonprofit that is working on community-development initiatives in several neighborhoods in Providence. She provided an update on projects and priorities for the organization.
PBN: What is King Street Commons and who will it provide housing for?
HAWKINS: In 2013, we issued a neighborhood revitalization plan called the Build Olneyville plan. It was funded by the [Department of Housing and Urban Development] Choice Neighborhoods initiative.
The idea was how do we connect the Providence Housing development called Manton Heights, which is in the neighborhood, along with the next of the neighborhood. It was physically isolated. The only way to access Riverside Park and that area was through this street that had been closed with Jersey barriers for years because of illegal dumping and crime.
The idea was how do we strategically redevelop this blighted part of the neighborhood that cuts off this public housing from the rest of the neighborhood. We will be constructing 30 apartments and 8,500 square feet of an early childhood education center. It will be four Head Start classrooms. The provider we have selected is Children’s Friend.
King Street Commons has two components: new construction of 30 new apartments and the 8,500-square-foot early childhood center, plus the renovation and re-syndication of 32 apartments that were originally constructed in 2001 in the Elmwood neighborhood. In total, it is 62 units.
By Mary MacDonald- July 24, 2019 10:30 pm
Carol Ventura is the interim CEO and executive director of the R.I. Housing and Mortgage Finance Corp., the state’s housing finance corporation. For almost 20 years, she has helped the state’s residents access housing in her roles as deputy director, director of development and assistant director of the policy division. She holds an MBA from Bryant University.
PBN: What is the Housing Opportunity Bond and how did R.I. Housing decide how to disperse its funds?
VENTURA: On Nov. 8, 2016, Rhode Island voters passed a state bond referendum authorizing the issuance of a $50 million Housing Opportunity Bond, $10 million of which was earmarked for urban revitalization and blight remediation. Voters authorized the state to use these funds to develop and implement a program for the improvement of properties that are blighted or in need of revitalization. That program is known formally as the Acquisition and Revitalization Program. R.I. Housing was tasked by [the R.I. Commerce Corp.] to administer this program.
By Mary MacDonald- April 17, 2019 10:30 pm
The Providence Preservation Society has chosen the Paterson Park neighborhood, part of the Blackstone Park Historic District, as the location for its 39th Festival of Historic Houses. While the list of individual homes open for tours is still being identified, the society has made plans to introduce a less-well-known historic district to the public. The neighborhood is part of a national historic district. It is bounded by the Seekonk River, Angell Street, Blackstone Boulevard and President and Laurel avenues. Executive Director Brent Runyon spoke to the Providence Business News this week about the event, to be held June 15-16.
PBN: Why was this area chosen for the 2019 historic home tour?
RUNYON: We thought about it about three years ago. It’s a neighborhood we’ve been in twice before, in the ’90s and the early 2000s. It’s one of those neighborhoods that’s really off the beaten track. It has some great history that we want to explore, and quality houses. Clearly representative of a very large majority of Providence homes. More recently, with the threat of [a historic home] demolition on Blackstone, it’s also a good way for us to point out that while these seem to be historic houses, they are not protected.
PBN: The writer H.P. Lovecraft lived in this area. Is his home still standing?
RUNYON: He lived with his parents in other apartments in the neighborhood. We’re not going inside any. We worked with Donovan Loucks [creator of a Lovecraft website, the H.P. Lovecraft Archive], who identified 15 other houses that we know Lovecraft had some relationship with. We are developing a brand-new tour. We are calling it a Young Lovecraft tour. It will be where he grew up, and some things [that influenced] him until his teens.
By Mary MacDonald-October 12, 2017 4:30 am
PBN: What is the most encouraging trend in this year’s report?
CLEMENT: First of all, we did see an increase in building permits. That’s a good thing. But we still rank last, on a per capita basis, for the past six years. But we have seen some communities up their amounts. As the market is recovering, we are seeing some recovery in building and developing units. Twenty-five percent of those were for multifamily units, which is also a good trend. Our biggest need is going to be in multifamily.
Courtesy of Providence Business News
By Mary MacDonald - January 24, 2019 4:30 am
Eric L. Hirsch, a professor of sociology at Providence College, recently released a report through HousingWorks RI at Roger Williams University that focused on the needs of the homeless population in Rhode Island.
The report, called “How to End Long-Term Homelessness in Rhode Island,” calls for greater investment by the state to counter a shortage of affordable apartments and increased rental subsidies for families and individuals.
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