The Target Alpena Development Corporation is announcing a new regional housing plan, a big step towards tackling the housing issue in northeast Michigan.
It was designed by northeast Michigan Housing Alliance, a partnership between 11 counties in the area. “We all came together and we said we have been existing as 11 silos,” said Lenny Avery, region E housing partnership lead. “How can we come together as a regional effort and that regional effort culminated into the project we have today.”
Region E includes Alpena, Alcona, Crawford, Cheboygan, Iosco, Montmorency, Ogemaw, Otsego, Oscoda, Roscommon, and Presque Isle counties.
There are multiple steps in the plan including building 5,000 new housing units while rehabbing the same amount over the next five years. “That’s rehabbing single family occupancy to ramps, to grab bars, to actual landlord rentals so people who are renting from landlords can have a higher quality of living,” Avery said.
The 5,000 new homes won’t be focused on one particular area. Instead, they will spread across northeast Michigan. “We want to show that we have a regional initiative that’s going to take care of counties from Alcona all the way down to Iosco to Roscommon, Presque Isle, to all points in between,” said Avery. “So when they make this investment, it’s an investment into a regional approach that we’re targeting 200,000 individuals.”
The plan isn’t ironclad and there’s possible changes in the future after the public is able to have their voices heard as well. “To the public, I want you to know that we’ll be rolling this out at a regional housing summit,” Avery said. “So, you’ll be able to have public comment and some feedback and give us some of this information. Our plan is not set in stone. It is a living document that we will be taking some feedback.”
The whole project received huge assistance from the Michigan State Housing Development Authority.