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Glennwood Townhomes Ribbon Cutting

September 26, 2012

For more information contact:

Barbara Burko, Renton Housing Authority, Executive Secretary, 425-226-1850, ext. 224
Erika Conkling, City of Renton, Senior Planner, 425-430-6578
Preeti Shridhar, City of Renton, Deputy Public Affairs Administrator, 425-430-6569

City of Renton Receives Prestigious Vision 2040 Awards

City of Renton and Renton Housing Authority join with others to celebrate important Sunset Area Revitalization project

RENTON – The City of Renton and Renton Housing Authority (RHA) joined elected officials, project funders, supporters and members of the community to celebrate the completion of the Glennwood Townhomes, a new eight-unit 4-bedroom housing development in the Sunset Area. The project is RHA’s first replacement housing for the planned Sunset Terrace redevelopment and one of many community enhancements envisioned by the Sunset Area Community Investment Strategy. Construction of the Glennwood Townhomes was financed through a combination of sources, including those from the King County Housing Finance Program, the Washington Community Reinvestment Association, RHA, and the city. Bumgardner Architects designed the units, Construction Enterprises & Contractors, Inc., built the homes, and Shelter Resources, Inc., served as development consultant to RHA.

“The Glennwood Townhomes is an important first step for the Sunset Terrace redevelopment and one of many enhancements envisioned for the neighborhood to create a more attractive and vibrant community for local residents and businesses,” said Mayor Denis Law. “We are thankful for the regional partnerships that have made the Glennwood Townhomes possible and look forward to pursuing creative opportunities with others to help generate additional jobs and commercial or residential investments in the Sunset Area and other neighborhoods in Renton.

Since the late 1990s, the city has undertaken several efforts to revitalize the Sunset Area, including two citizen task force efforts and land use and zoning changes. From the outset, RHA has been an active and integral participant in these task forces and the development of the resulting recommendations, actions and strategies. In 2009, the city, RHA, and the Renton School District completed the Sunset Community Investment Strategy that identified nine implementation strategies. The strategies were intended to build on and complement each other, ultimately enhancing the entire community. The highest priority strategy is to support the redevelopment of RHA’s 50-year-old, 100-unit Sunset Terrace public housing project. With the completion of the Glennwood Townhomes, the first replacement housing for residents of Sunset Terrace, revitalization of the Sunset Area is now underway.

The mission of the Renton Housing Authority (RHA) is to provide decent, quality, affordable housing in a safe environment to people with low incomes who make Renton their home. Currently they serve approximately 1,500 households that earn less than the median income in Renton. RHA officials at the ribbon cutting ceremony echoed the importance of partnerships and attributed the success of this project to the collaboration between different agencies.

“In my conversations with my housing colleagues in Washington and across the country, I have yet to come across a city that embraces its Housing Authority like the City of Renton does,” said Mark Gropper, Executive Director Renton Housing Authority. “It would be impossible to achieve what we want to do here without their partnership.”

Other key partners in this project include the King County Community and Human Services Department’s Housing Finance Program, which provided a grant of $1.95 million to help fund this project, and the Renton School District.

“Partnerships help make a difference for the students we serve,” said Renton School District Superintendent Dr. Mary Alice Heuschel. “This project is an example of our unique partnership with the City of Renton and the Renton Housing Authority. Together we can fulfill the mission of the school district and make Renton a great place to live, learn, work and play.”

In recognition of their achievements as partners in the Sunset Area, Puget Sound Regional Council executive director Bob Drewel presented the city, RHA, and the Renton School District with a 2012 VISION 2040 award. VISION 2040 awards recognize innovative projects and programs that help ensure a sustainable future as the region grows.

“Renton has created a model that incorporates green infrastructure, public services, community building amenities, and diversity into the region’s neighborhoods,” said Bob Drewel. “Today is the start of a great neighborhood, sure to be cherished in Renton’s future.”

By working together with RHA, the Renton School District, and several other community partners, the city hopes to revitalize the Sunset Area by making better use of underutilized land, redeveloping the existing public housing, creating more housing options, upgrading public infrastructure, improving pedestrian linkages and enhancing community parks, services, and amenities.