PHA Plans for a Future at Greeley School

Published 07/02 2014 09:35PM

Updated 07/02 2014 09:49PM

PEORIA - Taft Homes will be torn down.
That was the guarantee PHA officials gave a crowd of more than 30 at the Gateway Building.
The next question is when.
The PHA is looking at several properties to move residents into.
The property on the agenda was the old Greeley School.
The board discussed the plusses of the location including its proximity to the Taft site and the revitalization of the Near-North-side.
Area residents are worried about potential increases in crime and loss of property value, but the PHA says they are limited to where they can build new residences.
Several Peoria City Councilmen were on hand to get rid of rumors surrounding the future property.

Denise Moore, 1st District Councilwoman told us, “Far from being a negative for the community, it's going to be quite a positive because we're talking about brand new construction in an area that hasn't seen new construction in decades.”

The Greeley location would only be able to hold 45 of Taft's nearly 200 housing units.

Items also discussed at the meeting included making new housing smoke free and increased security in the new units.
Another development for the future site is a program called “Scholar House.”
According to current PHA plans, the abandoned Greeley School would be turned into a place of learning again.
Early childhood and adult education would take place in the historic building.
PHA Board Members say this would give the Greeley location and its residents a leg up because it links housing to education.

“We could improve the number of residents who are able to attend school. Certainly, education is key. We want our residents to grow. We want them to be able to access job opportunities” said PHA CEO Brenda Coates.

The next phase in the planning process is to rezone the property from school to residential.
The Peoria City Council will take the item up for a vote July 8th.

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