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City of Asheville Recieves Sustainable Community Grant

ASHEVILLE, NC – The U.S. Department of Transportation has announced that the City of Asheville is among 62 nationwide recipients of sustainable community grant funding stemming from a collaboration between the DOT and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.  DOT and HUD announced a total of $68 million in Challenge Grant/TIGER II funds for innovative sustainable development planning projects that integrate transportation, housing and urban development.

The original DOT announcement can be found at: http://www.dot.gov/affairs/2010/dot18810.html.  The City of Asheville will receive $850,000 toward its plans for its East of the Riverway Sustainable Multimodal Neighborhood initiative, part of a push for comprehensive housing, economic development and multi-modal transportation in the city’s river district.

“This grant award demonstrates that the City of Asheville’s sustainability initiative is in step with a larger national push for collaborative, comprehensive and sustainable development planning,” said Community Development Director Jeff Staudinger. “More and more, much like the partnership established by the DOT, HUD and EPA, Federal agencies are going to want to see multi-pronged strategies and regional cooperation in housing and transportation innovation.”

The challenge grant funding provides another step toward the East of the Riverway plan, one part of a larger plan for riverfront redevelopment that will leverage public/private partnerships and funding from multiple agencies. The award comes on the heels of the October 15 announcement of a $1.6 million HUD Sustainable Housing and Community Planning grant awarded to the Land-of-Sky Regional Council, of which the City of Asheville was a co-applicant.

The $850,000 award is less than the city’s initial request of $3 million, and the City of Asheville will next work with the DOT and its partners to prioritize the most appropriate use for the grant funding.

“We look forward to furthering our relationship with the U.S. Department of Transportation and working with them to identify the best ways this money can advance the East of the Riverway initiative,” Staudinger said.

For more on the City of Asheville Riverway Redevelopment initiative, go to http://ashevillenc.gov/business/business_in/economic_dev/default.aspx?id=18016&ekmensel=18_submenu_0_link_8.

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