- Residents of the former Orange Avenue Apartments are moving into their new home.
- According to the Florida Apartment Association, there’s a shortage of 1,575 apartments in Leon County regardless of income level.
- Watch the video to see how great the need is and how one neighbor feels to be home again.
Right now, there’s a shortage of about 1,575 apartments in Leon County regardless of income level according to Florida Apartment Association.
I’m Terry Gilliam your Southwest Tallahassee neighborhood reporter where the redevelopment of the Orange Avenue apartments is closing the gap for families right here on the south side.
Teresa Boyd is walking toward her new beginning. It's a place to call home at the new and improved Orange Avenue apartments now known as Columbia Gardens.
“I feel very blessed, and I’m glad Jesus let me live long enough to move into my new apartment.”
Boyd was living in the original Orange Avenue apartments before relocating due to the demolition of the complex. I asked her how important affordable housing is in Southwest Tallahassee and in Leon County as a whole.
“It’s important, because some people cannot afford regular rent. They definitely need to build some more on the north side and south side.”
According to the Florida Apartment Association, there’s a shortage of 1,575 apartments in Leon County regardless of income level. Now, the redevelopment project in Southwest Tallahassee is complete and has started moving people in the community in to close the gap.
It started five years ago. The Tallahassee Housing Authority developed a master plan to demolish 200 public housing units and replaced it with 500 affordable units. I asked Executive Director of the Tallahassee Housing Authority, Brenda Williams, how the redevelopment helps people living in the community.
“You’re going to see an increase in economic development activity.”
Williams also says, “we do get phone calls on a daily basis from people in the community that’s driving by and see it. They want to move here.”
Families that were living in the original Orange Avenue apartments will move back in first. Five families have already moved in so far.
Boyd tells me her new beginning makes her feel even better than George Jefferson.
“We’re moving on up!”
Williams also tells me that over 50 people that were living in the original Orange Avenue apartments will be moving back in sometime this year. In Southwest Tallahassee, Terry Gilliam, ABC27.