Local News

Durham leaders break ground on affordable housing

Posted July 16, 2019

— Growth is stronger than ever in downtown Durham, and developers are adding thousands of residential units a year. But not many of the new units are affordable, and developers want that to change.

On Tuesday, the City of Durham, with its community partners, broke ground on an 82-unit apartment complex on Willard Street.

The development will be built on a vacant plot of land behind the bus station on Pettigrew Street in downtown Durham.

The mixed-use project will also have 5,000 square feet of commercial space.

City leaders say the new development is a game-changer in Durham's affordable housing market.

According to Mayor Steve Schewel, families with an income between $25,000 and $50,000 a year could be eligible for some of the 82 units.

"One of the things we have to make happen is to ensure Durham is accessible to everybody. The wonderful amenities that we have downtown, the jobs that we have downtown, are available to everybody," he said.

Schewel says the plan is to build more affordable housing in the future. He also pointed to an affordable housing bond issue that's on the November ballot.

He said that, if the voters pass that bond issue, it could make a big difference in Durham’s affordable housing market.