WILMINGTON — A city-owned property will now become home to otherwise homeless individuals. At Tuesday’s city council meeting, the board voted unanimously to approve donating a roughly 1-acre parcel to nonprofit Good Shepherd.
The goal is to repurpose the property to create 33 units of permanent supportive housing for the chronically homeless and those with disabilities. The Wilmington Planning Commission approved Aug. 3 rezoning the land located at 3939 Carolina Beach Road, to a high-density, multiple-dwelling district.
The project will be similar to the SECU Lakeside Reserve, in partnership with the city, which serves as 40 affordable housing units for chronically homeless adults, including veterans and seniors.
The city will attach tree deed restrictions to the land donation to Good Shepherd:
- A claw-back provision that allows the city to take back ownership of the property if it is no longer being used for its intended purposes of affordable housing
- The buildings on site cannot exceed three stories, to fit in with the surrounding neighborhood and per public feedback
- The site is required to be secured on three sides with a fence or barrier to protect the future residents
City of Wilmington economic development director Aubrey Parsley explained to council at the meeting that the demand for affordable housing is growing and the amount of available suitable land for building it is diminishing.
“It’s a rare occasion for a viable site and also suitable for a nonprofit capable of handling in terms of scale, complexity, constructability, funding, staffing,” he said. “There’s an additional level of complexity finding a nonprofit with a compatible business model and in the position to add something new to its day-to-day operations and overall portfolio in the environment with rising costs and meeting budget demands.”
He added the partnership with Good Shepherd checks all the boxes.
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