Community Development Block Grant Funded South Grand Priority District LED Lighting Improvement Project Meeting
Dear residents, business owners and other stakeholders,
Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation was awarded a grant from the Community Development Administration of St. Louis City to replace existing Cobra-head lights with new, STL City approved LED lights on Grand Avenue from Utah Street to Meramec Street. TGNCDC will hold a public meeting on February 1, 2017 at 6:30PM at the Gelateria Del Leone at 3197 South Grand, 63116 about the project.
Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC
“The Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation CDBG Neighborhood Improvement Program and related activities is financed wholly through a grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Community Development Administration under the provision of Title I of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 (Pub L, 93-383 42 USC 5301 et seq.) and/or HOME Title II of the National Affordable Housing Act of 1990, as amended (Public Law 101-625)”
Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation (TGNCDC) leads the effort to eliminate blight and vacancy in Southwest Garden, Shaw, Tower Grove South neighborhoods. We have facilitated over 60 renovations in the past 6 years. 4056 DeTonty was one of the last remaining Land Re-utilization Authority (LRA-City Owned) lots in Shaw. After a CDBG subsidized housing development application by TGNCDC, in partnership with Rubicon, was denied based on the inability to use federal funds due to noise levels from the highway, Rubicon decided to develop the lot as a market rate home. The home includes a first floor master suite with the concept that some older people already living in Shaw may want to stay in the neighborhood and avoid having to use the stairs frequently.
Rubicon is holding an open house on Thursday, February 2nd, 2017 from 4PM to 6PM at 4056 DeTonty and all are welcome to come see the new addition to the neighborhood.
You may download the invitation here: JfMeyer-Invite
Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation (TGNCDC) promotes and improves quality of life by attracting public and private investment and providing real estate and other community services in Southwest Garden, Tower Grove South and Shaw neighborhoods.
In pursuit of our mission, our 20 year vision and framework plan and our 5 year strategic plan shaped our focus and led our activities for 2016.
Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC ended 2016 with a BANG! TGNCDC, in partnership with financial services firm TIAA, purchased $2.2 million of real estate totaling 34 units in 10 buildings. TIAA provided a $200,000 grant, 30-year amortization and competitive interest rate to reduce TGNCDC’s down-payment requirement and to help increase cash flow to financially sustain the organization, which is challenged with decreasing grant opportunities ($215,000 (Community Development Block Grants (CDBG)) was awarded to TGNCDC in 2014, $75,000 was awarded to TGNCDC in 2017). TGNCDC has a goal with TIAA to keep units affordable for 80 percent of new tenants who meet income guidelines of 80 percent to median or less.
Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC was honored with an Excellence in Not for Profit Community Building award from Community Builders Network of St. Louis. Over 200 people attended the 4th annual Community Builders Network Awards Ceremony at T-Rex in Downtown Saint Louis on March 31, 2016. The crowd encompassed community building professionals, business leaders, bankers, political figures, residents and other neighborhood stakeholders. TGNCDC was selected, in part, for our work in community engagement, completing our framework and vision plan and successfully consolidating three community development corporations into one larger, more efficient operation. Cbabi bayoc, business owner, SweetArt www.sweetartstl.com, and resident of Shaw, was commissioned to create the award. Learn more about his work at cbabibayoc.com
Multiple CDBG grants were administered including Landlord Training, Shaw Blvd Lighting Improvement activity and the South Tower Grove South Clean Up and Fix Up activity. Landlord Training completed 9 seminars with 561 landlords in attendance. They were trained in proper property management, fair housing, incentive and regulatory programs, maintenance, leasing, and other relevant topics. As initiated by the Shaw Blvd Improvement plan and the framework and vision plan, about 40 lights were replaced along on Shaw Blvd from Tower Grove Ave to Grand Blvd to increase safety and improve visibility.
Also, TGNCDC completed 6 clean up/fix up activities including new mural creation and installation, alley clean ups, over 500 porch light bulb replacements, vacant lot clean ups, median planting at Gustine Ave and Gravois Ave, and a dumpster inventory/upgrades.
Over 1823 tenants were screened (30+% increase from last year and 150% increase from 2014) through the TGNCDC ScreenDoor tenant screening program (www.TheScreenDoor.org). We’re also developing a new online application for release in 2017.
Rise Capacity Building grant (growing tenant screening business and eliminating vacancy initiatives) and a PNC grant (Tower Grove South Clean Up in partnership with Covenant House http://covenanthousemo.org/) were written, secured and administered at a high level. We also spent a great deal of time and capacity on a US Energy Foundation grant focused on developing, educating and participating in energy efficiency programs (Energy Efficiency For All) for low to moderate income people in multifamily buildings. TGNCDC also participated in a planning meeting with the Healthy and Sustainable Homes Initiative.
We also hosted our second annual “All In For Change” Poker Fundraiser and Bash, which raised awareness of TGNCDC activities and money to continue our work.
In development related activities, the gas station located at 4175 Shaw Ave. was sold to David Bailey, after community engagement and a competitive RFP process, to create a neighborhood burger bar, Bailey’s Range (http://www.riverfronttimes.com/foodblog/2016/10/14/new-baileys-range-to-open-in-shaw-in-late-2017 ).
A long term nuisance property located at 3901 Shaw was secured by the City of Saint Louis and The Wild Carrot Event space (https://nextstl.com/2016/05/historic-shaw-theatre-set-become-wild-carrot-event-venue/) was selected as a redevelopment project though some TGNCDC’s public engagement activities in partnership with the Saint Louis Development Corporation.
And, after 20 years, the 4100 block of Detonty St. redevelopment (https://nextstl.com/2015/11/long-vacant-detonty-site-gets-new-10m-uic-plan-december-groundbreaking/) into townhouses and apartments was started and will be completed in the 1st quarter of 2017.
TGNCDC also created 12 naturally affordable apartments in The Wedge (South Tower Grove South (Gravois Ave to Grand Ave to Chippewa St.)) through renovation. TGNCDC has grown our portfolio by 60 units adding 17 additional buildings in the last 18 months. This includes seven selective rehab projects.
We also completed and sold 3 subsidized new construction homes at 3279 and 3283 Alfred Street and 5721 Southwest Ave.
and we’re awarded another for 2016 (3722 Tholozan St.), which was recently completed (http://www.jfmeyerrealty.com/3722-tholozan-virtual-tour/). TGNCDC completed and sold our first market rate development project in the Southwest Garden neighborhood at 1817 Alfred Street.
Collaborative efforts with Tower Grove Park, MoBot (Missouri Botanical Garden), Greater Gravois Initiative and others have also begun. And we also hosted dozens of neighborhood tours with developers and investors in the area including The Wedge Housing Tour that drew over 25 developers. An updated TGNCDC vacant and abandoned property inventory helped define more opportunities.
Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation (TGNCDC) in partnership with STL Programs created an all-new community resource guide and directory for the residents of Shaw, Southwest Garden, and Tower Grove neighborhoods. The 80-page resource guide includes a comprehensive list maps, neighborhood association information, social services, local events, housing and historic district information, history and much more. According to Jeff Fister, President of STL Programs, this guide/directory will be the most comprehensive community resource guide ever made available to residents up to this time. Hardcopies have been published and distributed to over 28,000 residents on their doorstep throughout the Tower Grove Neighborhoods!
In an effort to educate the public about our community development service to Southwest Garden, Tower Grove South and Shaw neighborhoods and surrounding areas, we completed a promotional video in 2016.
Please watch the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=94qYF69fsvM
In 2017, we’ll continue to work to promote investment into the community including the remaining vacant buildings/other development opportunities, infrastructure improvements, nuisance property abatement and resident services. Through already secured 2017 CDBG grants, a new LED lighting improvement program on Grand Ave. from Utah Street to Meramec Street and a Wireless Access For All activity in South Tower Grove South will be completed. Also, we’ll hold 7 Landlord Training seminars. You can find our more information on the training schedule and topics at http://towergrovecdc.org/cdbg-activities/landlord-training/
TGNCDC also plans to grow our tenant screening program from 1823 applications processed to 2000, facilitate/complete, and sell multiple single family homes, continue to develop our property management operation, and work on other strategic community development initiatives.
Please look for more information on volunteer opportunities and our progress toward our 2017 goals at our website/blog at www.towergrovecdc.org, Twitter (@towergrovecdc) , and Facebook (Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC).
To residents, business owners and other area stakeholders in our service area, thank you for living, working and playing in Tower Grove neighborhoods and to others, thank you for your interest in our work to continue the revitalization of three important neighborhoods in South Saint Louis City.
Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation
Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC Invests $2.2 Million to Purchase 34 Units in the Shaw Neighborhood to Help Sustain Affordability- Financial services firm TIAA provides $200,000 in support
The near South St. Louis City neighborhood of Shaw, after 30 years of strategic redevelopment, has blossomed into one of the most desirable places to live in the region. As a result, rents are increasing and properties are selling within days of being on the market. Through an intensive community engagement effort and neighborhood analysis in 2014, Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation (TGNCDC) completed the framework and vision plan for the Shaw, Tower Grove South and Southwest Garden neighborhoods. In Shaw, goals were created to focus capacity on neighborhood housing, specifically quality and affordable housing on Shaw Boulevard and De Tonty Street. These areas have traditionally been less desirable to developers given their close proximity to the highway.
To meet these goals with an innovative approach, Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation (TGNCDC), in partnership with financial services firm TIAA1, recently purchased $2.2 million of real estate totaling 34 units in 10 buildings. TIAA provided a $200,000 grant, 30-year amortization and competitive interest rate to reduce TGNCDC’s down-payment requirement and to help increase cash flow to financially sustain the organization, which is challenged with decreasing grant funding. TGNCDC has a goal with TIAA to keep units affordable for 80 percent of new tenants who meet income guidelines of 80 percent to median or less.
TGNCDC Board President Janice Drake said, “Our TGNCDC board is excited about offering apartments at a moderate price to counter the rising market rate in the Shaw neighborhood. This opportunity to sustain affordability would not be a reality without the generous $200,000 grant from TIAA. We are committed to making sure these 34 units are well-maintained, comfortable homes long into the future.”
The investment also protects the portfolio of multifamily properties from absentee landlord ownership, which is a long-standing issue in the City of Saint Louis, while properly maintaining and managing the properties, including screening tenants through TGNCDC’s tenant screening program, Screendoor.org. Further, the investment will leverage improvements on Shaw Boulevard/De Tonty Street, which were completed by or facilitated by TGNCDC. They include the New Bailey’s Range at 4175 Shaw Ave. ($400,000 investment/opening date to be determined), the Wild Carrot Event Space ($1.2 million investment at 3901 Shaw Blvd./opening summer 2017), DeTonty Commons Apartments and Townhouse Development on the 4100 Block of De Tonty St. ($10 million investment/opening 1st quarter 2017) and streetscape improvements such as new branded crosswalks, new bump-outs, new LED lighting improvements and new banners.
“Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC’s efforts to obtain these properties will guarantee moderate price rentals with outstanding responsible local management. Such a win for Shaw and the City of St. Louis.” says Alderman Steve Conway.
“Shaw is considered an area of opportunity and it has always been a place for people of all income levels. We’re taking a proactive approach and making a sizable investment to sustain economic diversity and affordability to help low- to moderate-income residents stay in the neighborhood and to provide the same opportunity to others looking to move here. State and federal subsidized housing will never be enough to meet the demands of our community. Partnerships with organizations like TIAA are imperative to successful neighborhood revitalization that includes sustaining affordability with market rate deals,” said Sean Spencer, executive director.
The Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation is a not-for-profit organization that promotes responsible development, affordable housing, diverse character and vibrancy in the Shaw, Tower Grove South and Southwest Garden neighborhoods of St. Louis.
1-Grant made from TIAA-CREF Trust Company, FSB
Dave Bailey Formally Announces Plans to Bring 2nd Bailey’s Range Restaurant to a Long Term Vacant Building In Shaw
TGNCDC is pleased to pass on this information that was reported on several months ago. You can download the press release at pressreleasetinyrange and info on the 5th birthday specials at range5thbirthdayweb
Congrats to the Bailey’s restaurant family on the announcement. We look forward to seeing what you can do with the building and lot!!
TGNCDC will post updates as we learn more about the schedule and plans.
Over 60 sponsors donated items and cash to help Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation (TGNCDC) raise over $20,000 to continue our service to St. Louis City and the neighborhoods of Tower Grove South, Southwest Garden and Shaw. The 2nd annual event drew many neighbors and poker players from all over the metro area. Over 130 people attended with Collin Baker bringing home the championship of $450 in cash and a new Weber grill donated by Gas Appliance Service. Guests enjoyed comedy from Impolite Comedy LLC, pizza donated by Dominos, wings donated by Hodaks and other treats. Guests also enjoyed beer and wine donated by Civil Life Brewing Company, our neighborhood brewery. Not only did we raise some money, we also brought people together. It was a wonderful night of competition, fellowship and community building. Thanks to everyone who came and we hope to see you next year!
Download the Poker Night Presentation at tgncdc-poker-night-final
Thanks to our sponsors:
GAS APPLIANCE SERVICE
ST. LOUIS EQUITY FUND
JAMES J. ROBINSON
PAT CONNOLLY TAVERN
TOWER GROVE HEIGHTS
FRONTIER PROPERTY MANAGEMENT
JON BEcK LAW OFFICES
NOVUS REAL ESTATE
TOWER GROVE SOUTH
Pasta House Co.
Moolah Theatre and Lounge
TRX Tattoos and Piercings
Tower Grove Creamery
Gelateria Del Leone
AM Trading Company
Salon St. Louis
Ices Plain & Fancy
The Purple Martin
Oak Hill True Value
John D. McGurk’s
The London Tea Room
Great American Human Foosball
Flying Fur Grooming Salon
Gringo Jones Imports
Bull’s Eye LLC
Missouri Botanical Garden
The Bug Store
Community Acupuncture of St. Louis
The Home Depot
Local Harvest Grocery
Three Flags Tavern
Heavenly Hands Hauling & Handyman
Tower Grove Park
Helium Comedy Club
Morgan Ford Massage & Spa
Square One Brewery & Distillery
Michel Funeral Home
PNC Bank Awards Grant to TGNCDC, In Partnership With Covenant House, To Continue Clean Up Efforts In South Tower Grove South
They say, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” This isn’t necessarily the case in South Tower Grove South (South of McDonald Ave) where trash is drifts from cars and homes, local fast food restaurants and other businesses onto the commercial and residential streets in this rapidly improving area.
Through the Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation (TGNCDC) Framework and Vision plan (www.towergrovecdc.org), we identified South Tower Grove South as an area in need of investment and improvement. TGNCDC has already developed over $1,200,000 in the area, primarily south of Gravois. We’ve created over 24 newly updated and naturally affordable apartments that rent for $450 per month. In addition, TGNCDC has built/sold 2 subsidized new construction homes to bring new homeowners and stakeholders to the streets. We also supported the installation of trash cans and LED lights with Alderwoman Green. And TGNCDC has donated the use of one apartment as a police substation in the 3600 Bamberger building (http://www.ksdk.com/news/local/police-substation-moves-into-drug-house-1/69963300). The PNC Bank Clean Up Grant to TGNCDC, in partnership with Covenant House (https://www.covenanthouse.org), will continue our mission to bring public and private investment to the area. Beautification efforts also help create pride in the area by current residents/business owners. And the grant will present opportunities for area youth, who are bordering of homelessness, to work and build a resume for future employment. Employment interview training is also part of the Covenant House program.
TGNCDC is fortunate to work in neighborhoods with passionate residents/business owners, attractive housing/building stock and in close proximity to transportation, jobs and shopping. These factors, along with a clean and inviting appearance, will enhance the our ability to market the area for investment and continue to improve the quality of life. The grant is a win-win for the neighborhood and we’ll look forward to starting the year long activity in October/November of 2016.
2016-2017 Shaw, Tower Grove South, and Southwest Garden Community Resource Guide and Directory Coming Your Way!
It is finally here! Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation (TGNCDC) in partnership with STL Programs created an all-new community resource guide and directory for the residents of Shaw, Southwest Garden, and Tower Grove neighborhoods. The 80-page resource guide includes a comprehensive list maps, neighborhood association information, social services, local events, housing and historic district information, history and much more. According to Jeff Fister, President of STL Programs, this guide/directory will be the most comprehensive community resource guide ever made available to residents up to this time. Hardcopies have been published and are being distributed to over 28,000 residents on their doorstep throughout the Tower Grove Neighborhoods right now!
This initiative was founded on the principles outlined in TGNCDC’s coalition building goal to advance the Framework and Vision Plan, build awareness, and inform the public of resources available just minutes from their home. Due to the fact that information is scattered throughout the internet and not everyone is able to access that information nor has the time, TGNCDC sought to conduct comprehensive research on all the community resources available and locate them in one place that is available in the most accessible way. Throughout the process, TGNCDC reached out to neighborhood organizations, institutions, and individuals serving the neighborhoods to get a better understanding of what services are already available and to determine any gaps and community needs. Thanks to their collaboration and dedication to their neighborhoods, TGNCDC is able to continue to support resident services throughout Tower Grove Neighborhoods.
In an effort to engage the community even more, TGNCDC created a Front Cover Photo Contest where residents, employees, and business owners had the opportunity to get their photo on the front cover of the 2016-2017 Community Resource Guide and Directory. The photo contest was judged by TGNCDC committee members and the winner was Stefanie Hammond! Congratulations!
The continued effort by residents, organizations, institutions, and TGNCDC to provide support for community resources and services is a testament to the growing strength of the neighborhood and bonds throughout the community.
Thank you for all those who contributed to this effort and the continued overwhelming support of our neighbors and throughout our community.
For more information on this or other Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC activities, visit our website: towergrovecdc.org or call 314-865-5530.
Here is the online version!!
At one time, place-based community development corporations could be found throughout Saint Louis City neighborhoods. In fact, it is estimated there were more than 34 organizations receiving Community Development Block Grants from the St. Louis City Community Development Administration to help revitalize and stabilize neighborhoods. In 2016, the number of CDC’s has dropped to around 17, many of which are struggling to survive. CDBG funding is no longer guaranteed and the available funding for activities is a fraction of the amount distributed in the 1980’s.
Three years ago, Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC recognized the funding challenges, combined three organizations into one, completed a framework and vision plan (located at www.towergrovecdc.org) and a strategic plan to help the organization survive. The goal is to create self-sufficiency and eliminate our almost complete dependence on grant funding.
In an effort to educate the public about our community development service to Southwest Garden, Tower Grove South and Shaw neighborhoods and surrounding areas, we recently completed a promotional video.
Please watch the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=94qYF69fsvM
Also, please remember our 2nd Annual “All In For Change” Poker Tournament and Bash Fundraiser Will be Held On September 24th.
At our next Landlord Training, we will cover Leases and Leasing Practices, on Tues., Aug. 9, 6:30-8:30 pm. Learn from Jonathan Beck, an attorney who handles real estate, construction, and contract matters. A good lease will help protect you and your property. We will review provisions to include in your lease. Come prepared with questions. Register here.
All landlords, property managers, developers, and interested parties are welcome.
This activity is funded by a HUD Community Development Block Grant, via the St. Louis Community Development Administration.
Tenant screening service available at TheScreenDoor.org, a service of Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC.