First Lady Jane Beshear's Communications Office
First Lady Jane Beshear Announces Community Enhancement Funding in Tipton Court neighborhood for city of Richmond

Press Release Date:  Wednesday, May 18, 2011  
Contact Information:  Elizabeth Roach

RICHMOND, Ky. – First Lady Jane Beshear today announced funding for a community enhancement project for the city of Richmond.

An $890,500 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) administered by the Department of Local Government (DLG) was awarded for the revitalization of the Tipton Court neighborhood, located in close proximity to downtown Richmond.

“Today’s announcement is a wonderful example of how state government can support our local communities by investing in people and infrastructure,” said Mrs. Beshear. “This grant will revitalize the Tipton Court area while providing affordable housing for seniors in the area.”

The current dilapidated structures in the Tipton Court neighborhood are in very poor condition, and the Richmond Code Enforcement office has condemned six of the units. Structural damage, broken windows, obsolete or lack of electrical wiring and lack of central heating and cooling are some of the common problems with the homes.

This project will include the acquisition of eight parcels of land, the demolition of eight structures, the relocation of two renters, and the construction of two triplexes and two duplexes to serve as senior low-income rental units. Clearance of the eight structures will eliminate a concentrated area of dilapidated housing and enhance the community’s ability to serve the low-income senior population, which has a strong need for affordable housing. The city will reconfigure the acquired parcels into a cul-de-sac for the new properties.

The eight acquired parcels will be rezoned to four parcels and redeveloped to meet city zoning standards. The two triplexes will be built on two of the rezoned parcels, and the two duplexes will be built on the other two rezoned parcels. An optional relocation policy was established by the city as part of the project’s Urban Renewal Plan to make temporary relocation eligible for displaced families.

“By alleviating blighted conditions in Tipton Court, this project will help stabilize the neighborhood while providing safe, secure rental opportunities for the area,” said DLG Commissioner Tony Wilder. “Downtown Richmond will also benefit from this project, which will create healthier conditions and a beautified appearance.”

All of the new units constructed with CDBG funds will comply with universal design requirements and be served by the Richmond Public Works Department. Richmond has committed $7,500 in funding and $62,000 of in-kind infrastructure development to be used for street improvements involving curbs, gutters, storm drainage improvements, sidewalks and the new cul-de-sac.

Ten new affordable rental units will be available for low-income senior citizens. The approximately 900 square-foot units will contain one bedroom each. Proposed rental costs are very affordable, and the Housing Authority of Richmond currently has a waiting list of eligible individuals who are actively seeking rental units in Richmond.

“This funding for the Tipton Court neighborhood will be a big help for that area of Richmond,” said Rep. Rita Smart of Richmond. “It’s something that has been in the works for a few years, so I’m happy it’s now coming together. It will really make a difference.”

The state’s CDBG program is administered by DLG and funded through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Kentucky’s Congressional leaders’ ongoing support of the CDBG program ensures the availability of continued funding in Kentucky and nationally.