May 28, 2009
By Kelly Foster
SAVANNAH, GA (WJCL) – new housing concept opens in Savannah. Sustainable Fellwood is a mixed income community. It’s changing the face of public housing.
Earline Davis gives us a tour of a brand new apartment unit in Sustainable Fellwood. The entire place is energy efficient from light bulbs to appliances. Whether you’re in the kitchen or the bathroom you’re going green. The toilets are low flush and that means you can use a half flush, which uses a little water, or you can use a whole flush for more water.
The model unit is a two story town-home and rooms upstairs come with ceiling fans and the upstairs bathroom features a low flow shower head. The idea behind the development is to help the environment while helping those living in poverty. There are requirements to live here, you must be employed, a senior citizen or disabled. “The Housing Authority made a decision years ago, when we redeveloped our neighborhoods. It would not be 100% public housing because concentrated poverty does not work for anyone,” said Executive Director of the Housing Authority Earline Davis.
The first phase includes 110 units. 40 units are public housing or based on income, 48 are eligible for tax credits, and 22 are available at market rate. Nine families are already living in Phase 1. A big ribbon cutting ceremony was held Thursday to mark the completion of Phase 1. All of the units are expected to be filled by fall. There was also a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday to mark the start of Phase 2. Residents on the list to move in are looking forward to their new home. “What I’m looking for is to just enjoy it, you know be comfortable and be in a nice area,” said future resident Rebecca Johnson.
The Housing Authority says the idea of mixed income developments work and plans to copy the Fellwood model in other Savannah public housing complexes. City leaders say this is only the beginning, the best is yet to come.
Future phases will include a senior apartment building, retail, medical and technical space.
Copyright 2009 The Coastal Source