Insight News

Feb 07th

Near North affordable housing development plans advance

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Emerson North earns key endorsement from Rep. Keith Ellison; neighborhood association drafts community benefits agreement with developer

The Northside Residents Redevelopment Council invites area residents to a meeting regarding the Emerson North housing development to be held Tuesday, April 10, at 6 PM at the Urban Research and Outreach Center.

NRRC and Plymouth Church Neighborhood Foundation, the developer of Emerson North, have drafted a Community Benefits Agreement regarding the proposed development and seek neighbors’ affirmation of the agreement. The draft reflects design preferences neighbors requested, sets minority hiring goals and establishes a neighborhood advisory group in exchange for NRRC board support.

New building design options including fewer units than the 48 proposed originally, two roof options featuring lower roof heights facing 18th Avenue and added street-level porches. Ellison endorses Emerson North as community asset
A key endorsement comes from Rep. Keith Ellison, a Near North resident. Ellison told a group Feb. 22 at the Families Moving Forward Day Center that Emerson North is the kind of high-quality affordable housing that will be a community asset by creating jobs, generating customers for local businesses and boosting families’ financial stability. Families Moving Forward is a program of Plymouth Church Neighborhood Foundation.

“There are two ways to deconcentrate poverty. One is to disperse poor people, the other is to make them not poor anymore. How do we break the chain of poverty? Let’s start with housing,” Ellison said.

Emerson North is planned as multi-family workforce housing affordable to households with income between $20,000 and $40,000 a year, with up to 12 units reserved for formerly homeless families transitioning from our Families Moving Forward emergency shelter program. FMF staff will provide support services for them. Application priority will be given to families displaced by last May’s tornado, which damaged 500 homes, many of which remain in disrepair.

The development is being planned in partnership with a neighborhood congregational task force including clergy and representatives from Masjid An Nur, Church of the Ascension, Shiloh Temple International Ministries and Greater Mt. Vernon Missionary Baptist Church.


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