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THDA awards $900,000 grant for the ongoing redevelopment of the Austin Homes site

Established in 1941, Austin Homes is a nearly 23-acre site located just east of downtown.
Credit: Southeast Venture Design

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded $7.5 million grant for the ongoing redevelopment of the Austin Homes site that will include 50 units of supportive housing for seniors.

Southeastern Housing Foundation II, a subsidiary of the nonprofit Knoxville Leadership Foundation, is the recipient of the grant, and Knoxville’s Community Development Corporation (KCDC) will serve as the developing partner and property manager, according to a press release.

The Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly Program grants are awarded through an application process by HUD. 

The funds, which provide both construction funding and rental assistance to low-income seniors ages 62 and older, will allow independent living in a neighborhood setting with supportive care such as housekeeping, meals, health-related services, and access to transportation, officials said.

Established in 1941, Austin Homes is a nearly 23-acre site located just east of downtown. 

KCDC is replacing the site’s affordable housing units and adding a mix of housing choices for families and individuals of varied income levels to create a vibrant urban community, officials said.

The press release states that phase 3 of Austin Homes redevelopment will include approximately 153 new housing units, including the 50 supportive housing units.

Officials said that construction on phase 3 is expected to begin in 2022. Phase 1 includes 105 units, which are scheduled to open later this year, with Phase 2 to bring 180 units in late 2022.

The 50 single-bedroom units at Austin Homes will be home to those earning less than 50% of Area Median Income, as mandated by HUD for Section 202 recipients, officials said. The building will have 17 other one-, two- and three-bedroom family units.

Services and amenities will include:

  • Slip-resistant flooring materials, adequate lighting in all units and common areas, elevator access, grab bars in bathrooms, and handrails in common areas.
  • Multi-purpose community room for elderly residents.
  • Fitness room programmed for both elderly and non-elderly residents to promote mingling.
  • Access to gardens, greenway and a park.
  • Telehealth room pre-wired and equipped for virtual health meetings.
  • Broadband connectivity.
  • Two-way emergency call feature in all elderly units.

KCDC currently offers supportive services for seniors at The Manor at Northgate Terrace in Northwest Knoxville. 

Also, the Tennessee Housing Development Agency has awarded a $900,000 grant to help build 153 housing units in the third phase of Austin Homes redevelopment.

KCDC also received a $500,000 grant from THDA to help build the Phase 2 units.

Nashville-based Southeast Venture and Knoxville-based Johnson Architecture are partnering on the design of the third phase of housing, officials said.

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