NORFOLK, Va. – The City of Norfolk has voted to take the next step in the St. Paul’s redevelopment plan.
Tuesday night, city council members voted to approve an ordinance where the parcels of land located at 501 Wood Street and 450 Posey Lane will be transferred to the Norfolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority.
The city and the NRHA will enter into a cooperation agreement to use the properties for the redevelopment plan.
Earlier this month, News 3 reported that residents filed a federal lawsuit to try and make the city come up with a new plan for the redevelopment of the area.
The city’s plan to tear down public housing units in three neighborhoods has been talked about for years. The city wants to build mixed-income housing in the place and says some residents could later return to the rebuilt homes.
The lawsuit says the redevelopment plan doesn’t do enough to look out for the future of the current residents. It also discusses Norfolk’s history and says the city is already racially segregated.
Activists said the housing communities make up nearly 4,200 residents, half of whom are children and the majority are African American.
Local housing officials have said the project will unite the entire city and bring new life to the area, which they’ve described as crime ridden and poverty-stricken. The city has received a $30 million grant from HUD to help complete the project.
Residents protesting against the plan set up tents in front of Norfolk City Hall after the lawsuit was filed – not because people were camping out, but because they said that could be their future.
Those who filed the lawsuit told us they would like to see replacement housing built before any homes are torn down.