Tampa takes on Chicago, Boston to secure federal funds | News
Tampa, FL - Nestled between downtown Tampa and Ybor City is sizable piece of property soon-to-be-called Central Park Village.
The main drag will be Ray Charles Boulevard and the main attraction will be the park amphitheater.
It is a new kind of community set to open at Nebraska and Cass.
"It has been a blighted area for awhile and our goal is to turn it into a tax-producing area and also an area we can be proud of," said Jerome Ryans, the President and CEO of the Tampa Housing Authority.
That is because Central Park Village is affordable housing but it does not come cheap to the city.
The Tampa Housing Authority has already secured some federal funds and even broken ground on the property.
With a price tag of $425 million, every dollar counts.
This week, the feds named Tampa as a finalist for another $20 million grant. The competition is stiff, including some of the country's biggest cities: Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, Seattle and New Orleans.
If Tampa wins, it will be enough to build a third apartment building that will be named after the first African-American to run for Tampa's City Council, Essie May Reed.
The Reed Building will have 150 apartments specifically for seniors.
"Even though they may be affordable, they're going to have the market-rate brand to them. All of the amenities will be in these units, the pools, the nice facade," said Ryans.
Ryans hopes the money will come this way because he believes this village will provide a new way of life for the whole city.
"That will be your new downtown," he said.
The Housing Authority broke ground on the first residential building just this week and expects it to be up and running within the year.