Doing Good in Charlottesville – Local Partnerships Raise Awareness
Here in Charlottesville, we love to hear when local businesses pair with larger ones to help out the community. Last week, we heard the news that a Charlottesville-area nonprofit is celebrating a new partnership with big retail company.
Big Lots held a grand opening for its new store in the old Toys-R-Us building on Branchands Boulevard in Albemarle County on Friday, September 13, 2019. At the ribbon cutting, the retailer announced it will partner will Meals On Wheels to donate $5 each time a Big Lots Rewards member redeems a reward.
“It means a lot to us that the community recognizes the work that Meals On Wheels does. We’re feeding people, that is a really big deal, especially in this area most people don’t realize how many people there are out there that are homebound and they can’t feed themselves,” said Meals On Wheels Executive Director Leigh Trippe.
While helping those in the most need has been touched on in recent blogs that have highlighted Loaves & Fishes and the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank, for example, Affordable Housing in Charlottesville has also been a topic of great interest as more and more developers have come in and built ever larger apartment complexes in areas near the city’s center that traditionally were filled with single-family homes.
Habitat for Humanity has long been known in our community for helping people work in the construction or rehabbing of their own homes. The company also has the Habitat Store that helps recycle used furniture, building supplies and other items, and also helps out the local community as newer items can get expensive when you are trying to furnish a new place.
In order to do a great deal of good locally, Habitat has several projects going on around town.
Harmony Ridge off of 5th St Extended, heading towards 5th Street Station, will be a mixed income development. They are building five duplexes: four 2-bedroom homes, four 3-bedroom homes and two 4 bedroom homes. The remaining lots will be sold to private builders to complete the 14 unit project. Vertical building began in January 2019.
They will also be building four homes on Nassau Street in the Belmont Neighborhood of Charlottesville. This project will provide a mix of 3- and 4-bedroom homes and is expected to start in late 2019.
Thomas Jefferson Community Land Trust
The Thomas Jefferson Community Land Trust is a non-profit organization based in Charlottesville. It offers a new type of affordable homeownership: a community land trust (CLT). The CLT model not only makes homeownership more affordable, it also ensures that the home will remain affordable for future buyers as well.
Recently, four properties on Nassau Street went under contract that have been marked as an affordable option.
While income limits applied and no investors were considered, the units offer energy efficient new construction, two-story living with an open concept floor plan, and a low maintenance contemporary exterior. The first floor features a family room, kitchen with all appliances, half bath, and flex room for dining or office. The second floor features the owner’s suite plus 2 additional bedrooms and full bath, upstairs laundry including washer/dryer.
It appears there is a need for more housing of this type in Charlottesville and we will follow the latest developments and report on them in the future.