Special HDA Projects
Repurposing Land for Affordable Housing
As towns and communities in East Kentucky strive to grow economically and rebound from the collapse of the region’s coal industry, the Housing Development Alliance seeks opportunities to partner with local city and county governments to replace rundown, abandoned, and deteriorated structures with new affordable housing. We can also work with local governments to develop neglected, abandoned, or vacant land into a building site for multiple units of affordable housing.
Affordable housing is a top driver of economic development by increasing local purchasing power, new tax revenues, and job creation.
Often, the land occupied by crumbling and unusable structures will never be invested in by a for-profit business due to the high cost of demolition. That’s why a partnership with a nonprofit affordable housing developer, like HDA, is so beneficial. Our work not only increases the number of affordable homes in the area, which are currently in limited supply, but it also helps families and communities build wealth, grow the population, create opportunities, and make our towns more visually appealing, which also helps to attract new businesses.
Allais Redevelopment Project
Once a thriving section of Hazard, Allais fell victim to the rapidly shifting East Kentucky economic landscape. When times got too tough, the businesses in that little community closed up shop and left, which left Allais dotted with vacant, neglected, and decaying properties. The old strip mall sat empty for over 15 years and became a magnet for illegal dumping, drug activity, vandalism, and other dangerous activities.
In a first-of-its-kind project for HDA (especially in its size and scope), the City of Hazard chose to partner with us to create a new 15-home subdivision called “Gurney’s Bend” (named for former Kentucky Poet Laureate Gurney Norman, who spent part of his childhood in Allais). Gurney’s Bend is the first subdivision to be built within Hazard’s city limits in 50 years.
The city demolished the old strip mall, cleared the land and got it ready for home construction. HDA raised the walls on the first home on May 11, 2021 and has currently completed construction on 12 of the 15 homes. The project is expected to be complete by the end of 2022.
In the summer of 2014, HDA acquired property on Broadway Street in Hazard. The project required the demolition of the old Broadway School building, which had become a financial burden to the Hazard Independent School System and an eyesore in the community.
After demolishing the structure (and taking care to preserve anything of historical value), HDA built 6 new affordable homes that were all sold to families headed by women. Right up until the present day, these women maintain their newfound community and often get together for cookouts and potlucks.