Upson receives $500,000 for residential renewal

Ashley Biles Associate Editor

September 22, 2013

Upson County received good news recently with the awarding of a $500,000 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs. During last week’s Board of Commission meeting, Chairman Rusty Blackston stated the funding would be used for the revitalization of Prater Street in the Lincoln Park community.

In particular, this money will be utilized for the demolishing of substandard and vacant properties, clearing underdeveloped lots for the construction of new housing and the renovations/rehabilitation of existing structures that only have minor code violations and safety concerns. The current plans are to use the funding on 10 houses on the street, and possibly add more as the money allows.

This is not the first time Upson County has received a grant of this kind, the most recently being in 2011 when a CDBG was awarded for a similar project on Solomon Street in Lincoln Park. Both projects are part of the Greater Urban Redevelopment Plan for Upson County which was implemented in 2010.

Upson County is one of 69 Georgia communities to receive a CDBG this year from the DCA, which has awarded over $37.5 million in federal assistance from the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for the State’s CDBG program. Department of Community Affairs Commissioner Gretchen Corbin noted, “The State Community Development Block Grant program provides an essential resource to Georgia’s smaller more rural communities in their efforts to support projects that will create jobs and assist low and moderate-income citizens. As communities large and small are making difficult choices, today’s announcement represents an important investment in various local health and safety, economic development and job creation programs, insuring Georgia’s communities are prepared for economic development opportunities.”

She continued stating, “We are pleased that these resources will be combined with private investments and local funds to implement critical economic development and community development projects. As a key part of Governor Deal’s job creation team, we’re very pleased to assist so many Georgia communities prepare for job growth opportunities. Each year, CDBG investments demonstrate how state and local partners work together with the private sector to create successes in local communities for families and businesses.”