SCDOT’s approach to addressing the replacement housing needs of the potentially displaced residents in the communities of Ferndale, Highland Terrace, Liberty Park and Russelldale falls under the Revitalization Pillar of the Environmental Justice Community Mitigation Plan and includes:
- A Single-Family Affordable Housing Program
- A Developer Incentive Affordable Multi-family Housing Program
- Financial Literacy & First-Time Homebuyer Counseling
SCDOT is mitigating our impact to affordable housing and intends to construct this new housing early in the project so that families displaced by the project will have the opportunity to potentially select this new housing as their replacement housing. These programs will be completed prior to the completion of the right-of-way acquisition phase, which is projected to begin in 2023 and last until 2027. These dates are based on approval of environmental documentation without legal challenge and are subject to change.
Single-Family Affordable Replacement Housing Program
UPDATED: SCDOT is partnering with the South Carolina State Housing, Finance & Development Authority to build 100 new affordable housing units with a mixture of sizes (1-3 bedrooms) as close to Ferndale, Highland Terrace, Liberty Park and Russelldale as possible. SCDOT will work to secure 45 residential lots (increased from 20) in or near these communities and partner with a local non-profit to develop a Single-Family Affordable Replacement Housing Program. These houses must have direct access to transit and convenient access to the proposed Lowcountry Rapid Transit (LCRT) System. Relocated residents in the impacted communities of Ferndale, Highland Terrace, Liberty Park, and Russelldale will get first priority, and then remaining units will be open to other residents in the impacted EJ communities. This may extend past 2027 into construction.
Affordable Multi-Family Housing Program
SCDOT has partnered with the South Carolina State Housing Finance & Development Authority (SC Housing) to construct SCDOT replacement multi-family affordable housing through the SC Housing’s development programs. This partnership was initiated through an Intergovernmental Agreement with SC Housing in order to leverage state resources from both agencies to accomplish this affordable housing initiative. This partnership gives SCDOT the resources needed to develop multi-family housing mitigation and presents an opportunity for SC Housing to achieve affordable housing goals in this challenging region.
SCDOT proposes to combine mitigation funding with SC Housing low-income housing tax credits (LIHTCs), bond financing, grants, and other funding sources, as available, to design and construct a multi-family housing development in the local North Charleston area. SC Housing will be responsible for selecting a developer using their existing processes, monitoring the selected developer for timely progress and compliance, and ensuring that the multi-family housing units remain affordable for 30-years. More information on SC Housing’s development programs can be found here.
At a minimum, 100 multi-family affordable housing units will be constructed for families within the lowest income level category and will include a mixture of one-bedroom, two-bedroom, and three-bedroom units. It is SCDOT’s desire that developments include a green space or recreational area component and must be near the impacted EJ communities. Priority will be given to developments with the closest proximity. At a minimum, all proposed developments will be located within the City of North Charleston with priority given to families or individuals facing displacement as a result of the I-526 LCC WEST project.
Financial Literacy and First-Time Home Buyer Counseling
SCDOT will develop partnerships with local organizations to provide financial literacy and first-time home buyer workshops and counseling to residents of the impacted EJ communities. This educational offering is intended to assist participants as they attempt to secure residential loans and transition from renters to homeowners. The counseling will continue until the projected completion of the right-of-way phase in 2027.
NEW! First-Time Homebuyer Grant Program
SCDOT will partner with an agency to administer financial grants for down payment assistance for first-time homebuyers. First-time homebuyers in the impacted communities and individuals relocated to other communities will be eligible for this program.
For additional questions, please contact the Community Office at 843.258.1135 or visit us in Gas Lite Square (5627 Rivers Avenue).