New Ashburn housing development to boost city revenues - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

New Ashburn housing development to boost city revenues

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Plans of the Eureka Heights housing project in Ashburn, GA, which will include 56 units of single or multiple bedroom apartments Plans of the Eureka Heights housing project in Ashburn, GA, which will include 56 units of single or multiple bedroom apartments
Some of the 14 acre site formerly owned by the Turner County School Board where the new Eureka Heights apartment project will be built Some of the 14 acre site formerly owned by the Turner County School Board where the new Eureka Heights apartment project will be built
Jim Hedges, Ashburn Mayor Jim Hedges, Ashburn Mayor
ASHBURN, GA (WALB) -

A public private partnership will soon bring new housing to Ashburn and generate new property tax revenue.  The Georgia Department of Community Affairs recently approved plans for Eureka Heights. 

Developers will get tax credits to build the new apartment complex for mixed-income families.  The complex will be built on the site of a former school.  It's a collaboration between the city, the Turner County board of Education, IDP Housing and Family Vision Outreach, a Sylvester non-profit group.

Ashburn city leaders say open space formerly owned by the Turner County Board of Education could soon be used to attract new residents.

"We don't have that many rental properties in Ashburn and this will be a first class apartment complex," said Jim Hedges, Ashburn Mayor. 

The 56 unit Eureka Heights apartment project will sit on the former Eureka school grounds.

"It started in November of 2011," Hedges said.  "The chairman of the school board Sam Brown of Turner County Board of Education Approached me.  He had been contacted by a non-profit organization in Sylvester." 

The school board sold the land to the Downtown Development Authority for $50,000.  Then the group submitted plans to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.

"It's a competitive program DCA runs and we just didn't have enough points," said the Mayor. 

But they tweaked the plans and added a one acre park at the entry way of the development and resubmitted.

"And this year there were 60 applicants.  30 were awarded, and Eureka Heights ranked 13th in the state," said Hedges. 

Now he and planners can't wait to start building next to the city's new water tower.  "The 11 buildings that will be built out there, it's gonna be around 5-6 Million dollars, and will be added to the tax digest in Turner County." 

The mayor said developing the land won't just provide new homes.  He said it will also bring the city of Ashburn into a new chapter.  "The Tift Regional Hospital is building a new facility in Ashburn.  They've outgrown the one that they're in.  It's called Health Plus.  The work on that will begin in the April-May time period, the spring." 

And the workers filling that 10,000 sq. ft. facility and future teachers coming to Turner County will soon have a new place to live. 

Mayor Hedges said the city has a number of other developments set to begin this year.  He said it's an exciting time for Ashburn.

Work on Eureka Heights is expected to begin in March or April, and it should open by January 2015.

 

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