The goal for the revitalization of Richmond’s Richmond Village project was to turn 300 units of crime-ridden, run-down public housing into a vital neighborhood anchored by a community center and public open space. The development was originally built in 1954 and was a model of public housing until neglect, crime and poverty took over.
The Richmond Housing Authority together with Richmond Village (formerly Easter Hill) residents collaborated to re-construct a vision of community. The vision included open/community space with mixed-income housing; 100% of the rental housing is affordable, with 70% allocated for public housing residents. The for-sale family homes have a mix of low, moderate and market-rate housing.
This 28-acre site includes 202 units of affordable family apartments, 82 for-sale duplexes, a 20,000 square-foot community center, with a swimming pool, a children’s play area with active play equipment, a half-court size basketball area, and an open field approximately 100’ by 200’ that can be used for informal softball and pick-up soccer games. Utilities and site infrastructure for the 28-acre development was also conducted. Construction was divided into three major phases consisting of Phase I – construction of 117 of the rental units, the community center and the underground utilities; Phase II – construction of the remaining 85 units of rental housing; and Phase III – construction of the 82 for-sale duplexes. In addition, there is the ‘town center’, containing property management, recreational spaces and daycare which are seen as the link between the for-sale section and the rental units. This center achieved the goal of creating a community that would strengthen its relationships with the surrounding neighborhoods.
The project is partially financed through the use of a HUD Hope VI grant, which is to date the largest grant HUD has awarded. Nibbi teamed with joint-venture partner Baines & Robertson on this project.