(Southwest Memphis) It’s another big step towards changing the face and perception of public housing in Memphis.
Fairway Manor officially opened Thursday and is already home to some senior citizens and families.
People are excited over the modern look of the Fairway Manor and they’re lining up for the chance to move in.
For the public, it was the grand-opening of Fairway Manor and a look at how public housing in Memphis has changed for the better.
“I really and truly was amazed. I really didn’t expect this, for low-income,” said Joyce Newbern.
You don’t have to sell Newbern on how nice Fairway Manor is.
The complex has 68 one and two bedroom apartments for seniors 28 multi-family units with three or four bedrooms.
Joyce Newbern moved into Fairway Manor Saturday.
“The bathroom is large, the bedroom is large and the living room is just awesome,” said Newbern.
The brand new gated community is a far cry from the Graves Manor public housing project that was once occupied this site and was eyesore in Southwest Memphis.
“This was once one of the most dilapidated, rundown, crime ridden areas in the city of Memphis. Quite frankly it was deplorable,” said Ricky Wilkins, chairman of the Memphis Housing Authority.
Ricky Wilkins said the Memphis Housing Authority made a lot of trips to Washington and fought for money to tear Graves Manor down in 2007 and replace it with Fairway Manor.
The Memphis Land Bank played a key role, helping MHA secure tax credits, bring in equity investors, secure a contractor and an architect.
All while making sure the multi-million dollar finished product met the needs of the community, and especially people who need public housing.
“We’ve been able to maximize these dollars to provide the best, highest quality product and nobody knows it’s public housing…that’s out goal,” said Molly Beard, executive director of the Memphis Land Bank.
Thursday, Evelyn Wagner filled out an application and could soon be calling Fairway Manor her new home.
“It’s beautiful, it’s beautiful. I just love it. I can’t wait to move in,” said Wagner.
Fairway Manor has a senior amenity center with a leasing office and a 3,000 square foot multi-family community building.
Fairway Manor Apartments will be rented to households with annual incomes at or below 50 and 60 percent of the area median income, with 68 units reserved as public housing units.