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Empty and neglected: Historic Georgia Row Apartments will soon bring new affordable housing

A piece of Omaha's past, now getting ready for a new future
Posted at 6:51 PM, Aug 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-05 19:51:48-04

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — With the need for affordable housing increasing in Omaha, one local organization is looking to change that, while preserving history.

Built in 1890, it has sat empty for more than a decade along what used to be Georgia Street, but the Georgia Row Apartments will soon be alive again.

"We really believe in the value of architectural character for neighborhoods and so it would be a complete waste and shame to see this go down into the dirt just because it was uncared for and unrestored," said Christian Gray, co-director of inCOMMON Community Development.

InCOMMON Community Development is taking on the challenge. With deteriorating framing, old brick walls and even an original staircase, it won't be an easy project.

"This is a complete and total rehab. So everything besides the exterior finishes that you see here will be replaced; all the systems, HVAC, plumbing, electric all throughout," Gray said.

But it was the history and beauty of the building that was worth saving.

"The thing that we are really trying to focus on for this particular building is preserving the frontage because it has so much character," Gray said.

This renovation is just one piece of the $15 million project to bring more affordable housing to the neighborhood.

"We noticed that a lot of neighbors were really having housing insecurity issues, so we bought two apartment complexes, the Georgia Row Apartments here and the Bristol apartments on Park Avenue," Gray said.

With a total of 75 new affordable units to the area by the fall of 2023, the units will rent for $750 to $850 at Georgia Row and Section 8 vouchers will be accepted.

"The goal for us, particularly with this project, is to make sure that long-term residents or low-income residents can experience the benefits of a lot of the redevelopment happening," Gray said.

The Georgia Row Apartments will have 11 units of two- and three-bedroom units.

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