The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

May 2011 Joplin tornado

October 16, 2012

State, local officials celebrate completion of duplex housing development

— State and city officials on Tuesday celebrated the first housing complex completed with state tax credits in the wake of the Joplin tornado.

Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder was the guest speaker at an open house for the new Delaware Duplex Community, which will provide affordable housing for 20 families on a site where a grouping of duplexes stood before the May 2011 tornado.

As lieutenant governor, Kinder heads the Missouri Housing Development Commission, which provided tax credit financing for the $3.8 million project, located on Delaware and Maryland avenues just south of 20th street.

Kevin Parker, developer, said help from the state allows rents to be set at rates for residents who need affordable housing in the wake of the tornado. The first units are being rented, and there is “a substantial waiting list,” he said.

Parker said much of the rental property destroyed by the tornado was older homes, with rents reflecting the age of the building and markets at the time. He recalled that after the tornado, his office was “swamped with calls” from people needing affordable housing. He said much of the rental property he owned was damaged or destroyed.

“You can rebuild what was lost, but that involves higher costs and higher rents,” he said. “The challenge is to develop rentals that would be affordable for working families, and that’s where the state comes in. The MHDC brought the solution to the table.”

Kinder said the state was excited to be involved in the project as part of Joplin’s recovery.

“The only way Joplin will fully recover is for working families to be able to move back,” he said.

He noted that the developer used concrete slabs and other infrastructure left from the previous housing. That, combined with state tax credits, allows the properties to be offered for $425 per month, when costs would be in the range of $895 to $925 without state involvement.

The gathering attracted representatives of the Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce for a ribbon-cutting, along with Joplin city officials and most members of Joplin’s legislative delegation. State Rep. Bill White, R-Joplin, who represents the district where the duplexes are located, praised the quality of construction. He said he wrote a letter in support of the project after the developer responded to his questions about whether the properties would be affordable to heat, cool and maintain.

“We need a lot of affordable housing,” White said. “If the rent is affordable but your electric bill is $300 a month, that’s not affordable. Thanks for doing it right.”

The celebration also attracted the first renters in the complex, Tiffany and Andrew Seavy, and their young son. The couple lived with family when they moved to Joplin last July from Maine, where Andrew Seavy had served eight years with the Coast Guard. Now, he is attending Missouri Southern State University on the GI Bill, he said.



Duplexes

THE 1,450-SQUARE-FOOT DUPLEXES have three bedrooms, and two and a half bathrooms. Each has a garage and a storm shelter.

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May 2011 Joplin tornado
  • Local new-home construction catches up to previous pace

    After a slow start early in this fiscal year for Joplin, the construction of new houses has resumed at the pace that existed in fiscal year 2013, when permits for new houses averaged more than 16 per month. Since November, the beginning of Joplin’s fiscal year, permits for 118 houses have been issued for a total cost of $12.8 million. The average value has been about $108,000.

    June 11, 2014

  • 052212 unity walk1_72.jpg SLIDESHOW: One year later, One day of unity, updated Photos from a day of events commemorating the May 22, 2011 tornado anniversary

    May 22, 2012 1 Photo

  • 060314 Farmers rebuild 1_72.jpg Farmers Insurance writes manual based on experience from Joplin disaster recovery

    Joplin’s housing recovery from the 2011 tornado is one for the books. Jeff Dailey, CEO of Farmers Insurance, announced Tuesday that not only will Farmers Insurance stick with Rebuild Joplin to repair and replace the homes left on the local group’s waiting list, but the company also will kick off a similar recovery effort today for the city of Sea Bright, New Jersey, based on a book it has written to expedite disaster recovery that is based on its experience in Joplin.

    June 3, 2014 2 Photos

  • r052214butterflygarden.jpg New park feature opens on tornado anniversary to encourage healing

    Cunningham Park has become an emotional place for Pamela Praytor. The name of her son, Christopher Lucas, is engraved on a monument that stands in the park in memory of the 161 people who were killed in the May 2011 tornado. “Even though I cry when I come, it’s OK,” she said. “It’s part of the healing.”

    May 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • r051214greenbldgs3.jpg Home, business cited as examples of energy efficiency, strength

    Ramona and Charles “Hugh’’ Shields were not the least bit reluctant on Monday to open their new house in the tornado zone to a bunch of strangers who had a lot of questions. “I used to live in a house where I had to wear two pairs of socks in the winter to keep my feet warm — not anymore,’’ said Ramona Shields. “This house is nice and warm in the winter, and nice and cool in the summer.’’

    May 12, 2014 2 Photos

  • Mercy Health System to receive $23 million FEMA grant

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency will provide Mercy Health System of Joplin with $23 million in public assistance funding by the end of the year. The disaster relief was announced Friday by U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill.

    April 25, 2014

  • Respond With Love flower.jpg Joplin pays it forward with flowers; residents asked to return bulbs ‘fostered’ for other towns

    Suzan Morang’s front yard bloomed brightly last year from a colorful array of bulbs that she will happily pass on to someone else this year. Morang, 1207 Xenia Court, is a participant in America Responds With Love, a national nonprofit organization that distributes bulbs to disaster-stricken cities.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Creator of Joplin-based ‘Dear World’ exhibit features Boston bombing victims in new work

    The messages written on the skin of some Boston Marathon victims may be different, but Joplin residents will recognize the handwriting. Robert X. Fogarty, the creator of the “Dear World: From Joplin with Love” exhibit, took his signature style of photography and inspiration to Boston. Fogarty traveled to Joplin in 2011 and took pictures of community members with inspirational messages written on their bodies in black ink.

    April 21, 2014

  • r041414wildwood.jpg Opening of nursing home another recovery milestone

    Gladys Dutton has done a lot of things in her life, but Monday’s dedication of the Communities at Wildwood Ranch nursing home marked a first. “I’ve never cut a ribbon before,” she said. “I hope I do a good job.” Dutton was one of four residents to participate in the opening of the $8.5 million nursing center that eventually will be home to 120 people.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Joplin Redevelopment Corp. preparing for first property sale

    The first sale of property from the Joplin Redevelopment Corp. to Wallace Bajjali Development Partners is scheduled for May 16. The city staff will be working to prepare for that sale, it was discussed on Tuesday at a meeting of the JRC.

    April 9, 2014

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