Minneapolis Public Housing Authority (MPHA) has been chosen as a winner of five prestigious National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO) Awards of Merit for its community revitalization work and resident service initiatives. MPHA Executive Director/CEO, Cora McCorvey, traveled to Denver, Colorado on July 17, 2013 to receive the awards.
The Awards of Merit recognize outstanding achievement in housing and community development programs throughout the nation. MPHA won Awards of Merit for:
- Heritage Park Senior Campus: The Heritage Park Senior Campus received two Awards of Merit: One for Resident and Client Service and the other for Project Design. MPHA also was one of 20 NAHRO Award of Excellence winners in the ‘Design Category’ for Heritage Park Senior Campus.
- With the senior population continuing to grow at exponential rates, MPHA saw a need to provide affordable housing and services for seniors, particularly those suffering from Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia as well are take action to enhance and enrich the lives of low income seniors. Thomas T. Feeney Manor is a 48-unit assisted living and memory care ‘green’ facility providing enhanced care services. Heritage Park Senior Services Center (HPSSC) is a state of the art health and wellness center offering physical therapy, clinic services, adult daycare, a fitness center, a therapy pool and residents organizational support for seniors. These two facilities are linked and with Heritage Commons at Pond’s Edge 102 unit senior housing with services development.
- Cedars Improvement Project: The Cedars campus is an eight acre site with four existing high-rise apartment buildings. The complex provides affordable housing and community space for a diverse resident population. After decades of use, the site was in need of a comprehensive renovation. The project entailed a total redesign that integrated new lighting, landscaping, re-use of storm water runoff, and public art and furnishings to create a beautiful new campus where a thriving multi-cultural population could celebrate.
- Horn Recycling Program: MPHA initiated the “Horn Recycling Program” at three of its high-rise facilities. Tenant participation was a critical challenge. A significant number of tenants had language and cultural barriers that impacted their ability to participate in recycling activities. Many tenants not only failed to recycle, but contaminated the process by disposing recyclable items in the regular trash. MPHA adopted a three pronged approach: first, make the recycling program user-friendly, second, have a door-to-door approach in educating tenants, and third engage residents in picking up the recycling material. Through this approach, MPHA recycled over five tons that otherwise would had been disposed as trash.
- Foreclosure Stabilization PBV Program: MPHA and Minneapolis-based CDC, Project for Pride in Living, Inc., partnered to reverse the cycle of foreclosure and abandonment for six small multi-family rental buildings in low-income neighborhoods hard hit by the foreclosure crisis. Twenty-four rental units were acquired and renovated using federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) funding and other capital sources. Three units serve households earning 50% AMI or less and twenty-one are assisted through a MPHA Project-based HAP contract enabling households with even lower incomes to live in decent, safe, and affordable housing. This program was also awarded the 2013 North Central Regional Council (NCRC) – NAHRO Housing Achievement Award for this initiative in the ‘affordable housing’ category.
For additional information regarding these awards or about Minneapolis Public Housing Authority, please contact Bob Boyd, MPHA Director of Policy and Special Initiatives at 612 342-1437 – firstname.lastname@example.org or Mary Abrahamson, MPHA Information and Website Coordinator at (612) 342-1401 – email@example.com