In partnership with the Westgate/Belvedere Homes Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA), Palm Beach County, and the Florida Community Loan Fund, Neighborhood Renaissance is building 13 affordable and energy efficient 3-4 bedroom homes for income-qualified first-time homebuyers. Located just to the south of the City of West Palm Beach in unincorporated Palm Beach County and west of 1-95, the Westgate/Belvedere Homes community is bordered by Okeechobee Blvd. to the north, Belvedere Road to the south, Military Trail to the west, and Florida Mango Rd. to the east. Westgate was established in 1921 as the western gateway to the City of West Palm Beach.
A diverse community growing in population, Westgate is served by the “A” rated West Gate Elementary School and residents enjoy nearby amenities such as the Westgate Community and Recreation Center. The Westgate neighborhood is also conveniently located near major highways, many major employers including the Palm Beach International Airport, Downtown West Palm Beach, the Okeechobee Shopping Corridor, and the West Palm Beach Zoo.
To encourage the continued development of this community and to replace homes lost during Hurricane Wilma, Palm Beach County awarded Neighborhood Renaissance and the Westgate/Belvedere CRA $2 million to build 13 new homes affordable to first-time homebuyers.
Westgate’s New Affordable Homes:
The initial planning for this project began in 2007 when the Westgate/Belvedere CRA and Neighborhood Renaissance partnered to apply for Disaster Recovery Initiative funds through Palm Beach County’s allocation from the State of Florida. We applied for funding to build new homes to replace those destroyed or severely damaged by Hurricane Wilma. Our agencies were jointly awarded a $2,058,641 construction grant to make these homes affordable for low-income working families. Florida Community Loan Fund is providing an $850,000 revolving loan for the land acquisition.
The development will include a combination of 4BR/2.5BA and 3BR/2BA single-family homes, plus 2 duplexes with each having a 3BR/2BA and a 2BR/2BA side. All home models include the following:
• Solid block construction
• Spacious master suite
• Fully landscaped yard
• Energy Star appliances
• Quality wood cabinetry
• 1 Year Home Warranty
Prices for these homes are starting at $80,000. Upon completion each house will meet the standards of the
Florida Green Building Coalition for an energy efficient and environmentally conscious home. Click Affordable Homes for information about each model or call Lashea Brooks, Housing Manager at (561) 832-6776, ext. 103 or provide us your contact information.
Please learn more about our project partners by visiting them on the web.
Meets the first Tuesday of the month at the Westgate Recreation Center at 3691 Oswego Avenue in West Palm Beach
To become more involved in the community and the association, contact the Westgate/Belvedere Homes Community Redevelopment Agency at (561) 640-8181 or visit them on the web at www.westgatecra.org
Celebrate Westgate! Family…Community…Diversity
This free festival is sponsored by the Westgate/Belvedere Homes Community Redevelopment Agency and Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation to give the area community an opportunity to come together and celebrate their family, community, and diversity.
This year’s event will be held on Saturday, April 14, 2012 from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm at the Westgate Recreation Center located at 3691 Oswego Avenue, West Palm Beach, FL 33409
During the festival, Neighborhood Renaissance will also provide an opportunity for the attendees to walk through at least 1 of the remaining 5 available energy-efficient homes the agency built in the neighborhood. The organization will also have an information table in the Community Resource tent at the festival.
Neighborhood Renaissance held a ribbon cutting at 2495 Hiawatha Ave. on October 11, 2012 to celebrate the completion of thirteen energy-efficient homes that meet the standards of the Florida Green Building Coalition on what were five blighted vacant lots where decaying houses once stood. In addition to age and neglect, many Westgate homes were lost during the 2004-2005 hurricanes. This development is part of the long-term strategy to revitalize the Westgate community through the addition of new homeowners and the resurgence of the neighborhood’s housing market.
To bring the home prices within the financial reach of low and moderate-income buyers, Palm Beach County‘s Department of Economic Sustainability (DES) provided a $2,058,461 construction grant. These dollars were part of the County’s 2005 Disaster Recovery Initiative funds for Hurricane Wilma from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. According to Edward Lowery, Director of the Department of Economic Sustainability, “The state not only provided the financial resources but also the program guidance required to ensure that this funding was maximized to the greatest extent possible in addressing hurricane recovery and the preservation of affordable housing. Also our Board of County Commissioners has remained focused on addressing the housing and development needs of communities across Palm Beach County.”
The Florida Community Loan Fund, a statewide source of flexible financing to support community development projects by non-profit organizations throughout the state, made an $850,000 revolving loan to the project as well. James Walker, South Florida Community Loan Fund Loan Officer, acknowledged, “The last few years have proven the critical importance of the non-profit industry in addressing urgent needs in our communities. I cannot think of any other way these homes would have been built.”
Seven of the homes are already sold to first-time homeowners. One of the new homeowners, Liz Santiago, a single mother who works two jobs, commented on her new four bedroom home, “I have been searching for a place that was large enough for my family but could not find anything that I could afford. I doubted that I would ever own a home. Neighborhood Renaissance gave me the opportunity to finally purchase a quality home that I am proud of.”
Neighborhood Renaissance is a community based organization that builds and supports strong economies and diverse communities in Palm Beach County. We are currently renovating 70 foreclosed homes for sale and/or lease to working families. This housing initiative is funded through a partnership with Palm Beach County’s Department of Economic Sustainability. DES provided nearly $12,000,000 in federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program funding to Neighborhood Renaissance to help combat the negative impacts that foreclosed residential properties have on neighborhoods. During its recent history, the organization has helped over 65 families to purchase their first home and constructed 33 single-family homes in Northwood.
Currently, there are six homes still available. The sales prices range from $85,000 to $100,000; all models have three bedrooms. Interested first-time homebuyers may contact either Lashea Brooks or Christina Hewitt at (561) 832-6776 to learn more.