ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- After years of delays, demolition has begun at St. Petersburg's oldest public housing complex which marks the beginning of a major renovation project.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development approved the $93 million project in November.
What You Need To Know
- Construction is finally started on Jordan Park housing project
- Renovations were slated to start on closing housing project in 2017
- St. Petersburg Housing Authority
Renovations were originally slated to start in 2017 when dozens of units were vacated and boarded up, but hit major delays when five of the seven members of the St. Petersburg Housing Authority were either fired or replaced.
The bungalows that were once part of Jordan Park's senior living community will be demolished and replaced by a three-story senior housing complex. 60 units will be available and include washers, dryers, a backup power supply, and amenities needed to keep seniors safe.
As part of the first phase of the project, 97 townhouses will also undergo extensive renovations. The additional homes in Jordan Park will be renovated as the next part of the project.
The renovations also include more parking, community gathering spaces, an updated playground and recreation areas.
Roughly 85% of homes here are for families who make less than 60% of the area median income.
Amber Woods has spent nearly 5 years in her Jordan Park home. She's recently taken in 3 foster children and says with faulty plumbing and windows that don't open, she's relieved to see change finally coming to her neighborhood.
"Everyones telling us one thing here, one thing there," she said. "A lot of rumors. So to finally see something happening, its like wow maybe what they're saying is finally true."
Watching the demolition take place Woods says provides her a sense of hope.
"There were so many things up in the air and its very scary," Woods said. "Just to know they have a plan and they're actually moving forward."
The St. Petersburg Housing Authority will be managing the property and handle leasing.