“Where Will We Live?”- Providence Mobile Home Park

We cannot live only for ourselves.  A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men.  ~Herman Melville

Recently, the residents of Providence Mobile Home Park were made aware of the fact that the mobile home park owner has filed a petition to rezone the land from single family to multifamily dwellings and sell the land.  The zoning petition indicates the land will be developed as a multi-family, condominium complex.  The residents of the park face the challenge of finding replacement housing and relocation and have expressed frustrations with  lack of communication and inconsistent information from the park owner about his intentions. Residents also face extreme difficulty finding realistically affordable alternatives in the Hampton Roads area.

Providence Mobile Home Park by the Numbers

  • 170 families face displacement.
  • Based upon a resident survey, 40% of 91 respondents indicated that their household included a disabled person.
  • Of 75 respondents providing wage information, 66% were at or below 125% of the Federal Poverty Level.
  • The waiting list for Section 8 housing assistance is approximately 4 years long.

    Timeline of Events

The owner has a right to do what he wishes with his property and the VOP stands with Providence residence not to challenge the owner’s intention but with the sole purpose of assisting 170 families that face homelessness. The park has fall into disrepair and redevelopment of some sort is what eventually must occur, yet the timing and circumstances are not ideal at present.

What’s next? The VOP will continue to focus on its first priority- the residents of Providence and their well-being. All possible affordable housing opportunities in the area are still being explored. As for the park, organizations such as the Virginia Beach Community Development Corporation and Habitat for Humanity have expressed an interest in pursuing mixed-income redevelopment options.

Providence Mobile Home Park is just one of many mobile home parks in the South Hampton Roads area. There are about thirteen other mobile home parks that will undoubtedly be in jeopardy in the near future. The VOP hopes to not only support and assist the residents of Providence until this dilemma  is resolved in a fair manner, but to work toward equity in similar affordable housing issues in the future.

See also:

http://hamptonroads.com/2010/06/chesapeake-axes-plan-doesnt-save-mobile-park

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