For the past three months, I have been focusing this column on what urban renewal is and what the City Council has been considering for future urban renewal efforts. But now I’d like to shift gears and share with you what opportunities TURA currently provides! This month’s column focuses on the main programs that TURA offers.
Gateway Transitional Housing Program
Transitional housing was in desperately short supply after the Almeda Fire. Many impacted families were staying in their cars, sleeping on friend’s couches, checking into hotels, and generally finding a roof wherever they could. Indeed, there may be folks reading this article who are still in those circumstances.
To help get individuals and families into more secure and stable living arrangements while our permanent housing stock was rebuilt, TURA established transitional housing at the Gateway Site. The Agency installed the underground infrastructure, worked with the State to procure travel trailers, and connected with partners to design a housing program focused on helping students stay in the Phoenix-Talent School District. At the start of the program, fifty-two families were housed at the Gateway Site. Of those, 96% had lost their homes in the Almeda Fire and roughly 75% have children in the Phoenix-Talent School District. Each family is working with a disaster case manager to identify and move to their permanent home. As of last month, eight families have found permanent housing (wahoo!).
So, what is TURA’s role in this program? TURA is the property owner, Rogue Retreat (a local housing non-profit) manages the housing program, and ACCESS’ Center for Community Resilience provides individual housing case management to each family living at the Gateway. Recently, Rogue Retreat has requested to step away from program management and we are working with our partners to identify a new program manager and help foster a smooth transition for our community members living at the Gateway Site.
Accessing this program: If you or someone you know still needs stable housing after losing their home to the Almeda Fire, please reach out to Access for help – (541) 414-0318 or email email@example.com.
Beautification (Planting) Grant
There are three things that Talent unequivocally loves: people, plants, and pollinators. With our Beautification (Planting) Grant, we try to benefit all three! This grant provides up to $500 for residential or commercial property owners to install plants and trees on their property. Do you live in the urban renewal boundary? Do you want to improve how much shade your property gets? Install a pollinator garden? Use nature to attract more customers to your business? Visit our website talenturbanrenewal.com/beautification-grant to learn more and apply.
Accessing this program: Visit talenturbanrenewal.com/beautification-grant to check eligibility and apply online! If you aren’t an online user, call program administrator Mike Oxendine at 541-535-1566 x1020 or email at Moxendine@cityoftalent.org.
[upcoming] Revitalization Grant
TURA is designing a Revitalization Grant to help businesses/commercial properties improve the appearance of, enhance access to, and improve marketability of their buildings. This grant will provide larger-scale funds to support projects such as exterior painting, siding repair, awnings, green infrastructure, accessibility improvements, signage, etc. At the time that I am writing this article, the details are still being worked out on how this grant will work. On November 1st, at their regular board meeting, the TURA Board will review staff’s proposals and request any changes before implementation.
Accessing this program: Visit talenturbanrenewal.com to stay-tuned!