Google Ads help pay the expense of maintaining this site

Click Here for the Neighborhood Transformation Website

Fair Use Disclaimer

Neighborhood Transformation is a nonprofit, noncommercial website that, at times, may contain copyrighted material that have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. It makes such material available in its efforts to advance the understanding of poverty and low income distressed neighborhoods in hopes of helping to find solutions for those problems. It believes that this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. Persons wishing to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of their own that go beyond 'fair use' must first obtain permission from the copyright owner.
Sun Sentinel - 12/07/04 -

Delray backs low-cost homes
By Mireidy Fernandez

Delray Beach · Touting the economic diversity of the city, commissioners Monday approved creating a family/work force housing rule to establish three overlay districts and offer density bonuses to developers willing to provide affordable housing.

The formulation of the districts -- the Southwest Neighborhood, Southwest 10th Street and Carver Estates -- was described by city leaders as a stepping stone for the city's continuing efforts to provide low- to moderate-income housing.

"This is arguably the biggest issue in South Florida," Mayor Jeff Perlman said. "Delray Beach once again takes the lead in something very important ... and I believe entrepreneurial. It's a healthy community and has a healthy mix of incomes."

City planning consultant Joe Gray lauded the plan, which would allow developers to build additional units per acre with a stipulation: A portion of the housing units must be designated for affordable housing.

"There's a shortage of affordable housing in Delray Beach and a gap in what people can afford," Gray said. "The people who work here can't live here."

Part of the plan somewhat protects property owners who would be displaced. Developers would be required to pay up to $2,500 to anyone who would need to move, Gray noted.

Also Monday, commissioners adopted the Osceola Park Redevelopment Plan, which calls for such improvements as implementing traffic controls, repairing sidewalks, removing extra swales, planting trees and improving alleyways. The target neighborhood runs Southeast 10th Street to U.S. 1 and Southeast Second Street to Swinton Avenue.

Brenda Sweatte, a lifelong homeowner in Osceola Park, said that while she supports the plan she's concerned about drug transactions that occur in the area, sporadic drag racing and a rising number of burglaries.

"There's a lot of thefts in the area and people breaking in," said Sweatte, 52. "I'm afraid for my kids."

Bill Lennox, another area resident, complained about the traffic.

"We have speeding because we have open alleys and avenues," said Lennox, 44.

Gail-Lee McDermott, president of the Osceola Park Neighborhood Association, said her group has worked nine years to get the redevelopment plan passed.

"It's unfortunate it's taken so long. People have moved in expecting something and have been disappointed and have moved out," she said.

How the plan would be paid for hasn't been decided, McDermott said. Ron Hoggard, a city senior planner, told commissioners that beautification could cost $2.3 million but could be split among the city, Community Redevelopment Agency and property owners. Property owners would be assessed $120 annually for 10 years, he said.

"This can be very devastating for some," McDermott said. "We have residents who have lived here for 45 years or who live on fixed incomes."

Mireidy Fernandez can be reached at or 561-243-6690.

Copyright © 2004, South Florida Sun-Sentinel