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City, Mercy Housing celebrate opening of new affordable housing in Savannah Gardens

Published: May. 11, 2022 at 5:36 PM EDT|Updated: May. 11, 2022 at 7:42 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Happening Wednesday a nonprofit group Mercy Housing and City of Savannah leaders came together to celebrate new affordable housing now available in Savannah Gardens.

Some of the 85 new homes served as a background to today’s announcement.

WTOC spoke with one new resident who says her new home is a blessing, and one that came at just the right time.

A top priority for Savannah City Council is growing the city’s inventory of affordable housing, and that’s exactly what was being celebrated out here today.

Current and former city leaders, as well as those from Mercy Housing and other organizations that helped make this new housing possible, spoke about how the creation of the Mercy Housing addition in Savannah Gardens was years in the making.

“Affordable housing really, we think, is the foundation that people need to grow into whatever dreams they have. And with that affordable housing, that can happen,” said James Alexander, President of Mercy Housing Southeast.

And it’s families like Eryka Bowen and her father Chris, that can benefit.

“He’s disabled, I’m a full-time student, so I don’t work and go to school at the same time. He’s disabled, he has two...he has a double knee replacement, he has a herniated disc, so he gets disability...but that doesn’t really pay for anything.”

Bowen says her family had to sink at least eight thousand dollars into hotel rooms over the past four months while waiting on more permanent housing to become available.

“When people come from a difficult situation, or like my dad being in a hotel...not being able to have his own or having to go to somebody else’s to do your own laundry...to be able to walk on your own patio, to walk outside your own little back yard, to have a barbecue, to grill, to meet new people...it’s great.”

Alexander says residents must make under 60-percent of the area’s median income in order to qualify for one of the new units, but must earn enough to pay rent.

Click here to find out more about Mercy Housing in Savannah Gardens.

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