Step Up to create affordable housing in Raleigh, Greensboro, Fayetteville, Winston-Salem and Asheville

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North Carolina Construction News staff writer

Wake County’s Director of Affordable Housing and Community Revitalization unveiled the county’s groundbreaking partnership with Step Up last month at the 2023 Clinton Global Initiative in New York City.

“We’ve spent the last few days at #CGI2023 to share our commitment to disrupt homelessness: scalable housing solutions,” she said. “Using motel conversions fueled by public-private partnerships, we are providing homes for 500 unhoused individuals across NC. And that’s only the beginning.”

Step Up works with public and private partners to purchase older motels and convert them into studio apartments for those in need of permanent supportive housing.

“\Wake County and local nonprofits will provide vouchers to subsidize rents and Step Up will provide intensive case management services including, but not limited to, psychiatrists for medication care and transportation.

The goal is to create 500 affordable housing units within the next two years in Raleigh, Greensboro, Fayetteville, Winston-Salem and Asheville.

Apartments are expected to be completed in a third of the time and cost compared to traditional homeless housing development. The target completion date is Sept. 1, 2025.

“I was deeply honored to represent Wake County today alongside so many leaders who are working to do good in their communities,” McDowell said. “This recognition reflects the incredible progress we’re making to provide affordable housing to those in need. By partnering with Step Up, we can expand our efforts even further and help our hardest to house residents find safe places to live.”

County leaders traveled to California earlier this year to review the concept in person and meet with Step Up’s leaders.

CGI brings together global leaders and influential figures committed to addressing the world’s most pressing challenges. Among the notable participants for CGI 2023 are His Holiness Pope Francis; Janet L. Yellen, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury; Tony Blair, Former Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; and many others.

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