Out of the five properties, three are located within the 500-year flood plain, one has a majority of the property located within the 100-year flood plain, and one is not located in a flood plain. The property located on Alabama Street is zoned for neighborhood commercial and will require a zoning change, according to city documents.
The new homes will be located at the following addresses:
607 Georgia St.
330 Ellis St.
227 Roosevelt St.
811 Alabama St.
603 Centre St.
Stacy Brown, housing and community development manager, said the largest lot, on 811 Alabama St., will likely eventually be split into two lots.
She said so far, the city has had four qualifying applicants who will soon be able to move into their new homes. There are several home options with varying floor plans available, and applicants are ranked on a priority matrix; those who rank highest get the first pick on their new homes.
The program that enables the city to do this, called the Reconstruction on City Owned Property Program, allows qualifying applicants who would otherwise not be eligible for disaster recovery funds; in other words, those whose property is located in areas not eligible for rebuild or where the improvements are owned by the applicant but not the land.
Applicants eligible for the RCOP program are typically going to be single-family homeowners that currently reside in a floodway and are not eligible for federal disaster recovery funding to rehabilitate or reconstruct their current homes and applicants who own flood-impacted manufactured housing units on land they do not own.
Eligible applicants will sign a 30-year deferred forgivable loan, meaning they won't be required to pay any mortgage or the cost to build the house.
If the applicant decides to sell the home on city-owned land, the city has the right to buy the house and sell it to another low- to moderate-income household. If the city doesn't buy the house, the applicant must agree to limit the sale of the property to low- to moderate-income households. The property must also be occupied by the homeowner and not be used as a rental.
The qualifying applicants who previously lived in the floodway will have their properties turned over to the city, which is barred from developing on it. Applicants who previously lived in a manufactured home on rented land will turn the home's deed over to the city, and the city will dispose of the manufactured home, Brown said.
She said she expects construction on the new homes to begin in July and be complete within 90 days of the construction start.
The city has between 30 and 42 lots that can be used for this program, according to Brown. She expects to reopen the application process at the end of the month to find more qualifying residents.