Affordable housing

Matt Trotter / KWGS

Green Country Habitat for Humanity broke ground Thursday on a long-awaited multifamily project on the former site of Whittier Elementary.

The Whittier is a development consisting of 23 townhomes. It’s adjacent to a rental community for seniors that’s currently under construction. The Anne and Henry Zarrow Foundation is a major supporter of Green Country Habitat for Humanity. Foundation Executive Director Bill Major said the Whittier will help with Tulsa’s shortage of affordable housing.

Oklahoma Housing Market Reflects Nationwide Shortage

Apr 29, 2021

There is a record lack of homes for sale in the United States and prices are soaring. In Oklahoma it isn’t much different. Statewide there are 50% less homes for sale than last year and the average home price has increased 15%.

 

A metric used by the National Association of Realtors measures whether a market is better for buyers or sellers by estimating the time it would take to sell out of available homes. Six months of supply is considered a neutral market. Less than six months is considered a seller's market. In Oklahoma inventory is slightly less than two months.

Matt Trotter / KWGS

Residents are starting to move into Tulsa’s mixed-income River West community as phase one nears completion.

There are 74 total units opening up, with 37 for residents of the old Riverview Park public housing torn down to make room for the new apartments. The goal is bringing together people from all walks of life in a transformed Eugene Field neighborhood.

"River West is a community of inclusion and unity. This is what creating a better Tulsa by transforming lives and community looks like in action," said Tulsa Housing Authority Board Chair Rick Neal.

City of Tulsa

The City of Tulsa’s housing policy director is leaving that job to make an interim role permanent.

Becky Gligo has been picked as the executive director of Housing Solutions, the organization leading work to end homelessness by members of the A Way Home for Tulsa Coalition. She’s led Housing Solutions on an interim basis the past 10 months while also working at the city.

Tulsa Housing Authority

The Tulsa Housing Authority is on to the next stage of its project to remake the Eugene Field neighborhood.

Construction has begun on the more than 70 townhome and garden-style walk up units in phase two of River West, the name of the more than $200 million Choice Neighborhoods project in the area of Southwest Boulevard and 21st Street. About half will be replacement units for residents of THA’s Riverview Park and Brightwaters apartments, which are being demolished, with the rest a mix of tax credit and market-rate units.

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OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The U.S. Department of Justice has sued the affordable housing agency in the western Oklahoma town of Lone Wolf for allegedly denying housing to a Black mother and her 5-year-old daughter because of their race.

Matt Trotter / KWGS News

City of Tulsa officials say that people experiencing homelessness who have set up encampments on West Archer Street will not be pushed to move until the opening of an emergency shelter in the former Juvenile Detention Center on Gilcrease Museum Road scheduled for next week.

Tulsa Crime Stoppers

The Tulsa Police Department and Tulsa Crime Stoppers are discouraging Tulsans from giving cash to panhandlers, even as those experiencing homelessness may be more visible during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"There are thousands of organizations in this city with -- just wanting to help as much as possible," said TPD Maj. Mark Wollmershauser Jr., on a Tuesday virtual town hall organized by Tulsa Crime Stoppers also attended by city councilor Lori Decter Wright.

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The City of Tulsa has established a major piece of its four-year strategy to address a shortage of affordable housing.

It seeded an affordable housing trust fund with $4 million from a downtown revolving loan fund and has set a goal of raising up to $20 million. City Housing Policy Director Becky Gligo said that won’t cover all 4,000 units needed.

The current pandemic has brought keen economic hardship, of course, to a vast number of individials and families within various levels of American society. Given that so many folks who rent a house or apartment in our community now require extra time to acquire their unemployment checks and/or federal benefits, the Tulsa City Council voted unanimously last night to ask Gov. Stitt for a statewide moratorium on evictions. In addition to this, Tulsa County has historically had one of the highest rates of eviction in the country.

Oklahoma’s affordable housing tax credit will not be touched going into next fiscal year.

Gov. Kevin Stitt has vetoed House Bill 2760, which would have cut its annual cap from $4 million to $2 million.

Mental Health Association Oklahoma Chief Housing Officer Greg Shinn said Stitt’s veto message correctly noted cutting the incentive would not provide more money for the state budget until fiscal year 2023.

Pixabay

Oklahoma’s affordable housing tax credit is officially on the chopping block.

A bill to lower its annual cap from $4 million to $2 million narrowly passed the Senate on Tuesday and awaits the governor’s signature.

House Bill 2760's Senate sponsor, Sen. Stephanie Bice (R-Oklahoma City), said the state has one of the nation’s better affordable housing stocks.

File Photo

Oklahoma lawmakers could cut in half a tax credit meant to encourage affordable housing developments.

House Bill 2760 would lower the annual cap on the credit from $4 million to $2 million. Rep. Kyle Hilbert  (R-Bristow) said an incentive evaluation commission estimates the credit will lose Oklahoma $106.1 million over 10 years.

Tulsa Housing Authority

Work is underway for a vast project that will transform Tulsa’s Eugene Field neighborhood.

The first of six phases of the development that will be known as River West is now being built. It has 74 of 460 total planned housing units.

All apartments will have the same finishes and features, but some will be subsidized, some will be below-market and some will be market rate.