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Landmark and Legend
Memphis, TN
Here we note legends-in-their-own-time and landmarks as they transition into history

Cleaborn Homes
 
Cleaborn Homes
1955-2011
 
Cleaborn HomesBuilt in 1955, the 460 unit public housing project has provided a neighborhood and housing for thousands of people over the years. Time and use, however, transformed the buildings into problem housing. "It got really bad, to the point where you wondered if you were actually in Memphis or a Third World country," said First Baptist Church-Lauderdale pastor Noel Hutchinson.*

Residents were asked to leave the complex in 2010 and in March, 2011, demolition began. At a ceremony marking the beginning of the demolition, former residents came to remember the good times. Some were among the first families to move into the apartments in 1955. "I had a stone seat out in the yard and I had flower bed... I got a certificate from City Beautiful.
I loved it over here," recalled Rosenia Whiting who moved in when the apartments were new.*

Once demolition is complete, a $93-million project will take shape, financed with a $22-million federal grant along with state, local and private funds. The old housing project will be replaced with a combination of single family homes, duplexes and quads, similar in scope to what has replaced other old housing projects in the City of Memphis.The 400 new units will include 140 for public housing and low-income tax-credit rental units, 110 designated for low income-tax credit only units; 40 will be voucher units; and 110 will be market-rate rental units. Completion is expected by the autumn of 2015.

Cleaborn Homes  Cleaborn Homes

A pile of rubble remains after one of the Cleaborn
Homes buildings is razed. (photo April 30, 2011)
  Cleaborn Homes demolition. Photo taken April 30, 2011. 

Below: artist drawing of some of the new housing
Artist drawing of new housing 


*Quotes are from The Commercial Appeal, April 13, 2011