Tell me what you see in this rendering of Beal Street Square that you remember from Part 2 of this series – What is a Shotgun House? Do you recognize the gable roof lines, the narrow roof over the offset front door, porches, and houses set side by side? You’re looking at a project that didn’t happen over night, but began October 9th 2007 when the Happy Hill Neighborhood was authorized for redevelopment. City leadership along with the Rocky Mount Housing Authority, the Rocky Mount-Edgecombe CDC (Community Development Corporation) and the Happy Hill Neighborhood Association all pledged their leadership, time, and resources, which culminated in the recent ground breaking of Beal Street Square.
Beal Street Square is housing for working families making between $8 and $20 per hour. 80 units are being built which will cost on average, for a 1 bedroom, $75.00 a month, a two bedroom $95.00 a month. Rocky Mount need jobs, but we need housing for the workforce that new jobs create. Beal Street Square, when built, will be a place to live, work and play in a safe, energy-efficient, and culturally diverse population. Large employers like Pfizer, Cummings, Draka and Honeywell are key in the Rocky Mount economy. We can all stand up, arms thrown over our heads in the Wave for these companies. Providing housing for a workforce the likes of Beal Street Square will encourage new jobs where employees want to live.
Here is Vann Joines, Master of Ceremonies for the ground breaking celebration. His expertise in the area of “workforce housing” is of incalculable value to the exciting future of Rocky Mount. He helps us understand the far reaching importance of housing for working families. “Large National and Global Companies attract employees from all over the country, and when they are hired for a job in Rocky Mount they now have to make a decision as to where to live. We loose many employees to places like Raleigh, Greensboro or even Tarboro that have strong neighborhoods walkable to downtown.”
Soon: We Will Add A New Concept to our Learning Curve