This morning, the Franklin County Commissioners unanimously approved a contract with the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Healthy Homes program for $15.5 million to support the creation of more than 200 new units of affordable housing in the Linden neighborhood. In addition to supporting the construction of 33 new houses, the funding will be leveraged to secure additional funding for hundreds of additional units that will be available for low-income families to rent.
“The need for affordable housing is perhaps the greatest challenge facing our community right now,” said Board of Commissioners President John O’Grady. “As our region continues to grow, our housing, transportation, education, and healthcare systems are going to be stressed like never before. People need homes that are close to jobs, shopping, and good schools, and they need homes that are affordable.”
In addition to the new affordable housing units, the commissioners’ funding will be used to provide repairs for up to 100 lower-income families’ homes, and to support a $192,000 renter support program that can provide emergency short-term funding for struggling renters. It will also support child development and early learning programing in the Linden neighborhood to ensure on-time enrollment for students entering kindergarten.
“Strong neighborhoods support successful families,” said Commissioner Kevin L. Boyce. “And Healthy Homes is an investment in Linden and the people that live there. Growth can be good, but it should benefit everyone, and it can’t just be allowed to force low-income families out of neighborhoods that they’ve lived in for generations.”
The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Healthy Homes program is a partnership that includes Community Development For All People and the Franklin County Land Bank (Central Ohio Community Improvement Corporation), and which has provided repairs, renovations, and new homes at more than 730 sites across Franklin County since 2008. The new homes and rental units that the partnership builds are constructed on Land Bank land, which ensures that they will remain affordable in the years to come.
“Nationwide Children’s Hospital is a wonderful partner for us and an invaluable asset for our community,” said Commissioner Erica C. Crawley. “Nationwide Children’s Hospital is committed to and invested in supporting all Franklin County families, helping to take care of our most vulnerable residents, and making sure that our community can thrive and not just survive. Nationwide Children’s Hospital’s leadership team recognizes that housing is a social determinant of health, and that having safe, stable housing is the crux of healthy people and healthy communities.”
The commissioners announced historic new investments in affordable housing
in 2019, and this funding is in addition to that. The board allocates more than $20 million to housing initiatives each year, and last year topped $50 million in rental support, homelessness funding, and developing affordable housing. Click here
to learn more about the commissioners’ affordable housing initiatives. For more information about Healthy Homes, specifically, visit HealthyHomesColumbus.org