September 18, 2018 In The News, Media

Officials Announce $350K for East Camden Revitalization

TapInto.net
September 18, 2018

A federal grant will continue the revitalization of East Camden.

On Friday, U.S. Senators Bob Menendez and Cory Booker and U.S.Rep. Donald Norcross (D-Camden) announced the City of Camden and its Housing Authority have been awarded a $350,000 Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to advance the city’s efforts to transform the city’s East Camden neighborhood.

The grant will enable the Housing Authority of the City of Camden to come up with a plan to rebuild the public housing neighborhood of Ablett Village, a 75-year-old development of 306 units — into a mixed-income community that fits in with the broader neighborhood. It will also focus on planning for  alleviating flooding in the neighborhood, and restoring River Road to a vibrant commercial corridor.

“The Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grant award is the first step towards developing a comprehensive plan to improve the quality of life for our Marlton and East Camden communities,” said Camden Mayor Frank Moran.

Stakeholders in the project range from the Cramer Hill’s Resident Association and St. Joseph’s Carpenter Society, to the Camden City School District, Rutgers University, and faith-based institutions.

“Everyone deserves an affordable, safe place to call home,” said Norcross in a statement. “These funds will help change lives and transform neighborhoods in Camden, and I will always support efforts like this that improve our city. Camden is rising – with more jobs, less crime and better educational opportunities – and this grant is another step in our city’s great revitalization.”

Earlier this month, it was announced that the housing authority received a separate $1.7 million HUD Jobs Plus grant that will help residents of the city’s Ablett Village neighborhood find better jobs.

The HUD’s Jobs Plus Grant provides public housing residents with employment, training, education and financial education services to try and help them find and keep better paying jobs. Those who find work through the program are granted a four-year, 100 percent income disregard for their rent.

“This is a locally-driven plan to improve quality housing, education, and services to secure a better future for Camden’s families,” said Menendez, the ranking member of the Senate Subcommittee on Housing, Transportation, and Community Development. “That’s why I’ve always fought for the resources Camden and other New Jersey communities need to transform their visions into reality.”

“By increasing access to safe, affordable housing, quality education and creating jobs, this federal funding will help bolster Camden’s continued growth,” Booker said in a statement.

Camden received a $300,000 Choice Neighborhoods Initiative Planning Grant in 2012 to design a plan for the Mount Ephraim neighborhood, and in 2016, it became the first New Jersey applicant to receive an Implementation Grant.  The City of Camden and its Housing Authority were awarded a $13.2 million grant to revitalize the Mount Ephraim Neighborhood.  Asbury Park, Newark and Jersey City have also previously received Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grants.

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