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Rising costs leaves THA with a $1.2 million funding gap for Orange Ave. Apartments

Posted at 6:32 PM, Mar 17, 2022

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Rising costs has left the Tallahassee Housing Authority trying to fill a $1.2 million dollar funding gap due, but people in Tallahassee looking for affordable housing need not to worry just yet.

"I don't have a car so the gas I don't have to worry about, but the inflation on rent, groceries, and even life insurance everything has gone up," Teresa Boyd said.

Boyd lives on a fixed income right next to the upcoming Orange Avenue Apartments project.

She says the rising costs of living due to COVID has put a strain on her finances.

"It's just so expensive until you just can't hardly make it," Boyd said.

Boyd will have to move out of her HUD housing apartment soon because of the Orange Avenue Apartments Project.

Like others in the area, if she had to move and pay market prices for an apartment, she wouldn't be able to afford it.

"I had to cut back on somethings, and one of the things I had to cut back on was food," she said.

Boyd says with everything pricy these days, it's important for her and her friends to be able to have access to affordable housing.

While gas, groceries, and other everyday items are rising, so are building materials.

Brenda Williams with the Tallahassee Housing Authority said they've had to ask for $1.2 million between the city and county commission in extra funding to build the Orange Avenue Apartments due to an increase in things like building materials, labor costs, and other construction price increases.

"Material costs, lumber costs, transportation costs, across the board just about every type of material that we're going to use their is going to be an increase in costs," Williams said.

However, Brenda Williams, Executive Director of the Housing Authority says that those costs are not going to be put back on renters.

Orange Avenue Apartments is set to have hundreds of housing units available for families on Tallahassee's southside, 40% of those units will be reserved for Section 8 Housing. with the rest being affordable and market value housing.

With the first phase of apartments set to be completed by the end of 2023, Williams says that the project is the start of a revitalization wave for people who live on the south side.

"We expect this project to be transformational, we expect this project to be the start of a transformation on the southside of the city."