City leaders hope new program will transform blighted areas into thriving neighborhoods - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

City leaders hope new program will transform blighted areas into thriving neighborhoods

By Ben Watson - bio | email    

Memphis leaders are hoping an innovative new program can turn blighted areas of the city into thriving neighborhoods.
  
Diversity Developer Incubator is designed to train and develop an army of women and minority developers to help create new homes, new buildings and flourishing communities.

There's a proposal to build senior citizen housing on a city-owned site in the Binghampton area. Its developer, architect Jimmy Tucker, is a graduate of last year's Diversity Developer Incubator.
  
After completing the program's intense 13-week training course, Tucker and two other graduates submitted proposals that earned them the opportunity to buy property for $1 dollar.
  
Now, the DDI graduates are using what they learned in class to redevelop the properties, which could in turn generate new tax revenues.

"They are exposed to everything involving real estate development," said Carlee McCullough with the DDI program.

"From the software packages that it takes to put a real estate development deal together to potential financing to their introduction to contractors and sub-contractors, they're introduced to the total contracting process." 
 
Last year was the program's first year. This year, more than 120 aspiring developers are expected to apply.
  
Organizers say there are hundreds of properties that could be available for development.

Registration for the next class is scheduled for February 23 at 5:00 p.m. at the Central Library. 

Click here for more information.  

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