SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - For years, the Strathmore Estates has been characterized as a crime ridden neighborhood.
But that's all changing thanks to City of Savannah's initiative to demolish the old and build a brand new affordable housing community. WTOC went to the new Savannah Gardens as the first family moves into their brand new home.
Packing up and moving out is never much fun, but for Johnnie Mae Pollard this is for a new beginning.
"I don't care, it's worth it," said Pollard.
Johnnie Mae is moving from the old and run down Strathmore Estates apartments to a brand new energy efficient, high quality apartment across the street in the city's new Savannah Gardens development.
"It's exciting. It's nice and clean and I really like the environment," said Pollard.
This is the first of four phases. They are already breaking ground on phase two, which will be senior housing. More apartments after that and then single family homes will be built next. Once all is complete, more than 550 families will be living in the new community.
While this is affordable housing, in order to move to the neighborhood one must go through an application process.
"It's not public housing, it's not section 8 housing, you are able to live here as anyone is. The qualifications for living here is you have to be responsible, willing to be a good member of the community, and follow the terms of the lease and make payments and rent. There's going to be a range of incomes," said Martin Fretty, City of Savannah.
For Johnnie Mae Pollard, she's just happy to be a apart of a major revitalization project. A neighborhood she hopes will improve and be crime free.
For any individuals interested in obtaining additional information about Savannah Gardens, they can come by the office at the Strathmore Estates at 601 Crescent Dr for the next two weeks. After that, applicants can come by the offices at Savannah Gardens at 515 Pennsylvania Ave. Applicants can also call 912.335.4835.