Orange County officials OK funding for construction of 4 affordable housing complexes in Pine Hills

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — When it comes to affordable housing options in Orange County, the supply hasn’t kept up with the demand.

However, hundreds of families in Orange County will soon get a chance at a place in any of four housing complexes thanks to a trust fund that’s part of Mayor Jerry Demings’ “Housing for All” plan.

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“When Mayor Demings came into office, one of his priorities was to address the affordable housing crisis,” Orange County Housing and Development Division Manager Mitchell Glasser said.

In 2019, the county launched the Housing for All Task Force, which recommended that the county invest funding in affordable housing.

County commissioners then voted to put $10 million into a housing trust fund each year for the next 10 years.

“The county put money towards this issue so that we would not have to rely solely on federal funding,” Glasser said.

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Last week, commissioners voted unanimously to award more than $13 million to developers to build four different multi-family affordable housing options for up to 525 families.

“Households making between 80 percent of the area median income and 60 percent of area median income...basically your working lower-income households,” Glasser said.

According to Glasser, developers have also agreed to lower the barriers for 25 percent of their units so even more families can qualify.

“With the pandemic and the crisis, not everybody might have perfect credit,” Glasser said. “Some people...many, have faced eviction.”

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Glasser says, over the last six months, the county has also found 30 other lots that have been deemed suitable for ownership housing single-family homes and depules that have been recommended to the non-profit community for affordable housing construction.

Once construction begins on each of the four complexes, they’re expected to take approximately 18 months to complete.

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Karen Parks

Karen Parks, WFTV.com

Karen Parks is a reporter at WFTV.