Newport News in talks of replacing Ridley Place

13News Now Jaclyn Lee has the story.

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WVEC) -- The City of Newport News is discussing a plan to transform the Marshall-Ridley neighborhood by replacing the Ridley Place housing project with mixed income housing.

Sheila McAllister, Director of Planning for Newport News, said Ridley Place is the city’s oldest public housing project. 

“I think everyone should have the ability to choose where they want to live and know that wherever they live, they can go to the grocery store, they can go to the cleaners, they can feel safe in their neighborhood,” said McAllister.

The city is creating a “transformation plan,” which would replace the 259 units with mixed income housing – if it gets approved by residents.

On Thursday, the city will hold a community workshop to hear resident input on the transformation plan.

Resident Ajana Coles has lived in Ridley Place for three years and said she welcomes the plan.

“It's not a bad neighborhood but sometimes it has its points you know, like with everything else, I feel like if they fixed it up, it's going to go… much better,” said Coles.

13News Now asked McAllister where current residents will go if demolition begins.

“They will be able to receive vouchers and then some will be located to other sites that will be owned by the Newport News Public Housing Authority,” said McAllister.

McAllister said before any sort of rebuilding process begins, it must first be approved by residents. Depending on funding, she said it would take two to five years to begin demolition and then another five to ten years to complete construction.

The community workshop will be held on September 28 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Marshall Early Learning Center. 

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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