Texas GLO letter to Galveston mayor confirms plan details

A letter from the Texas General Land Office to Galveston Mayor Lewis Rosen confirms the broad aspects of a plan to replace public housing destroyed by Hurricane Ike, which the newspaper reported in Thursday’s edition.

The Daily News obtained the letter from a source Thursday morning. 

The July 31 letter from Gary Haygood, deputy commissioner for financial management at the land office, says the “plan will consist of two major components — public housing and affordable rental.”

It goes on to describe those like so:

• “The public housing component must move forward with the GHA’s plan for the Magnolia and Cedar Terrace sites. It may include a limited version of the mixed-use development, but incorporate 141 units dedicated to public housing residents.”

While official sources are declining to comment about the plan, others with knowledge of public housing issues have expressed concern that a limited version of a mixed-income plan would not attract the private investment needed to execute such a plan, leaving Galveston stuck with the same type of public housing that existed before the hurricane. 

Those sources also are worried a limited version of the mixed-income plan would lack the support services — everything from child care and health services to grocery stores — needed to promote a real community.

• “The affordable rental component will be designed to target and replace dilapidated properties and/or parcels with multifamily and single family affordable rental units,” the letter states.

“These units will be eligible for project-based vouchers and must include the balance of the 569 units to be built.

“In cooperation with the city, the land office will solicit one or more companies to develop, build, and/or manage this component. The GHA may respond to this solicitation.”

Read more at GLO letter to isle mayor confirms plan details.

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About Bob Voelker

Head of the Munsch Hardt (Dallas law firm) Hospitality & Mixed Use Development Group, and former developer of affordable housing. I'm i
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