affordable housing

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

  Key West voters in March rejected purchasing the Peary Court housing complex for $55 million.

The 157 two-bedroom townhomes were originally built as Navy housing, then sold in 2013.

Most of the people who live there live year-round in Key West and hold fulltime jobs — exactly the kind of person who has the hardest time finding a place to live on the island. Homes are snapped up by snowbirds and often rented in the offseason to tourists.

Nadege Green / WLRN

Clairemis Blan walks the gravel paths at the Little Farm trailer park with her cell phone in hand.

Neighbors wave hi to her and some stop her to list their grievances at the park, which is just East of Biscayne Boulevard in the Village of El Portal.

One neighbor tells her someone is breaking into empty trailers. Another warns  her of strangers milling about at strange hours.

“I love them,” she says of her neighbors.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

Key West voters Tuesday rejected public purchase of the Peary Court subdivision for $55 million.

Two referendum questions asking voters to authorize the purchase and issuing bonds for the purchase failed on Tuesday.

The 157-unit townhome neighborhood at the edge of Old Town was built by the Navy in the 1990s. Private developers bought it for $35 million in 2013.

City Commissioner Jimmy Weekley said Tuesday evening he was disappointed in the results. Weekley championed the purchase.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

  When Richard Payne was campaigning for the Key West City Commission over the last few months, he kept hearing about one issue: affordable housing. It didn't surprise him.

"I have four kids. Three of them don't live here, and that's because they couldn't afford to buy a home here and raise their family here. So basically, they've moved away," said Payne, who won a commission seat earlier this month.

Nadege Green / WLRN

Residents of the Little Farm trailer park filed into El Portal Village Hall for a meeting Monday on how to find affordable housing options and other resources to move out.

The trailer park was sold earlier this year to Wealthy Delight’s LLC, a Coral Gables-based company. The new landowner gave residents a February deadline to leave the property.

Yolande Dorce, a 30-year resident of the trailer park, said she pays $450 a month to lease the land. She owns her trailer outright, but it can’t be moved and will likely be demolished.

Nadege Green / WLRN

Twelve-year old Abigail Alexandre lives in a cozy peach trailer in the Village of El Portal. 

Abigail, like many of the tenants left at the Little Farm trailer park at 8500 Biscayne Boulevard, is afraid she’s going to lose her home.

“My biggest worries are finding a new house and the problems of getting the money because my dad is the only one working,” she said.

Little Farm is one of the only places poor families can afford to live in the upper middle class neighborhood

Tom Hudson

Between a neighbor's leaf blower and planes overhead taking off from Miami International Airport, it's hard to hear Jorge Artiles describe the home on Northwest 34th Street.

Mike Mozart / Wikimedia Commons

Developers want to build what would be the biggest shopping center in the Florida Keys — 335,000 square feet — on the site of a former Rockland Key junkyard.

Walmart has signed a letter of intent to be the anchor tenant, and the store would probably employ about 200 people. The shopping center as a whole would employ 600.

Which leads to this question: Where are those workers earning retail wages supposed to live in the expensive Florida Keys?

Joe Raedle / Getty Images via Miami Herald

Outside the Calvary Bible Alliance Church, Jean Celin holds court. Dressed in a smart black suit, headset cradling his neck and cell phone in hand, Celin greets a steady stream of churchgoers while taking one phone call after another.

Celin is the assistant pastor at this Haitian church in Delray Beach. He’s been coming here for the past 30 years — almost as long as he’s been in the United States.

“Everybody likes him,” says Marc Horace, the senior pastor at Calvary. “He’s very helpful, he’s a very giving guy.”

The feeling is mutual.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

The city of Key West could buy the private Peary Court development for $55 million, if voters approve.

The city and the development's owners, White Street Partners, have an agreement on the price. But such a move would require approval of two referendums from voters, one to borrow the money and another to buy the property.

Check Out The Median Rent In Your Miami Neighborhood

Jul 15, 2015
sean dreilinger / flickr

Rental start-up Zumper has released a map (scroll below) of the median rents across Miami neighborhoods, and concludes the Miami rental market has become the sixth most expensive in the country.

According to Zumper, the median price of a one-bedroom rental in the city — including apartments, condos, and rentals — $1,880.

freedigitalphotos.net

Today on the Florida Roundup, the state of affordable housing in Miami: More than a third of the population is spending more than half of their income on housing, according to a New York University study. Some experts worry that this will contribute to brain drain in South Florida. 

The Florida House is expected to reject the Senate's modified health care plan on Friday, leaving the legislature where it's been for the last few months -- deadlocked.

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