TACOMA, WA-The $190-million renovation and partial redevelopment of the 188-acre Salishan public housing project in the city’s Eastside neighborhood formally got under way this week. The three-phase project will remove old and obsolete public housing and create new affordable rental and for-sale housing. The Salishan Community was built in 1943 as military and worker housing during the onset of World War II. The Tacoma Housing Authority acquired the property in 1954. The project will create 1,270 new housing units, including 921 rental units available to residents at 50% of the median income level. Unlike the original Salishan community, the redeveloped property will include 88 for-sale homes available to low-income households, 15 homes for which residents can pay a portion of the down payment by contributing labor, and 246 market-rate home ownership units. The project also includes the addition of a medical and dental clinic, education technology center, and property management and maintenance facilities. New streets and parks also are part of the plan.This week’s groundbreaking marks the beginning of grading and new utility construction. Demolition began in June 2004, following the relocation of many existing residents to other subsidized housing within the metro area. Construction of rental buildings will begin in late 2004, with the first units available in October 2005. For-sale homes will be available in early 2006. The first phase of the project includes 11 renovated affordable homes available for sale to low-income residents; six Habitat for Humanity homes; 55 subsidized rental units for low-income seniors; 270 rental units affordable to low-income residents; and 119 market-rate home ownership units.Seattle-based Lorig Associates is acting as the master developer. Torti-Gallas CHK Inc. is the project architect. Walsh Construction Company/WA, is the construction manager.

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