Historic partnership formed in Sterling Community

GREENVILLE, S.C. – A coalition of area public and private partners came together Tuesday to break ground for a new residential development in Greenville’s Sterling neighborhood.

Leaders from Habitat for Humanity, The City of Greenville, Homes of Hope and Christ Church Episcopal broke ground a project that will house 13 families on Jenkins Street to be part of a development known as Joshua’s Way inside the historic Sterling community.

Habitat has built more than 340 homes in Greenville County over the past 32 years and the Joshua’s Way development represents a collaboration among several partners to implement components of the Sterling Neighborhood Master Plan, completed in 2010.
“This was a project that we have worked to put together for a long time,” said Monroe Free, president and CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Greenville County. “This marks a historic project inside the City of Greenville to strengthen families and the communities through better housing opportunities.”

The Sterling community is part of Greenville’s rich history. Over the past two decades, there have been several initiatives by interested residents, community agencies and church groups in working toward improvements. Sterling has a very active neighborhood association that, over time, identified the need for more homeownership opportunities and quality affordable rental homes for senior citizens within the community.

”We are pleased to be a part of this wonderful partnership that is working to create new affordable housing opportunities for residents in the Sterling neighborhood,” said Ginny Stroud, community development administrator for the City of Greenville. “This new development will be supported, in part, with HOME Investment Partnership funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.”

Peggy Baxter, a Habitat board member and a member of the Sterling Land Trust, said one of the main objectives of the master plan is to create more affordable housing that will attract families to the neighborhood. The plan envisioned partnerships between the City, faith groups, non-profits and community members. “This development represents opportunity,” Baxter said.

City Councilwoman Lillian Brock Flemming, who represents the district that includes the Sterling neighborhood, says Joshua’s Way will help strengthen the Sterling neighborhood and all of Greenville. Flemming was a vocal leader for creation of the affordable housing strategy that City Council adopted in January 2017 along with an appropriation of $2 million to support its implementation.

“This project can be a catalyst for the way we partner to address the need for affordable housing in Greenville,” she said. “There are many positive aspects of our city’s growth and success, however, the most challenging unintended consequence of this growth is the pressure it creates on our affordable and workforce housing supply. This pressure can leave long-time residents and citizens vital to our local workforce without suitable options for housing.”

Construction on Joshua’s Way will begin later this year with an estimated completion in 2020.

About Habitat for Humanity of Greenville County:
Through affordable home construction, Habitat for Humanity of Greenville strives to eliminate poverty housing and the social and economic problems it causes. Habitat Greenville received the Greenville Chamber’s Neighborhood Improvement Award in 2015, and was recognized with the 2015 Nonprofit Excellence Award, given by the SC Association of Nonprofit Organizations (SCANPO). Habitat Greenville celebrated its 30th anniversary and construction of its 330th home in 2015. Learn more at www.habitatgreenville.org.