Washington, D.C.—U.S. Senator Susan Collins, the Ranking Member of the Housing Appropriations Subcommittee, announced today that a proposal by Lewiston Housing Authority and the City of Lewiston has been selected as one of five finalists for an implementation grant through the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative Program.
Senator Collins has championed Lewiston’s “Growing Our Tree Streets” plan, which seeks to transform the Tree Streets area in Lewiston. She sent a letter in support of Lewiston’s grant application earlier this year. Additionally, in 2019, she hosted then-HUD Secretary Ben Carson in Lewiston, where they toured the Tree Street Youth Center and spoke with various stakeholders about how the Choice Neighborhoods Grant program will help revitalize the Tree Street neighborhood.
The $30 million project would transform a neighborhood with the highest concentration of childhood lead poisoning and families in poverty and Maine’s lowest performing schools into a lead-free, economically diverse, and welcoming community. The grant proposal seeks to redevelop and construct 185 mixed income units on three sites that are fully controlled by the Lewiston Housing Authority. The funding would also allow Community Concepts to support residents of the neighborhood with additional workforce, education, and health care resources.
“It is very encouraging that Lewiston’s comprehensive plan to improve the health, safety, and overall wellbeing of Mainers living in the Tree Streets neighborhood has made it to the final round of consideration,” said Senator Collins. “As the Ranking Member of the Housing Appropriations Committee, I have strongly advocated for Lewiston’s application, and I have spoken directly with HUD leaders about the transformational impact the project would have for local residents and the entire city. The combined focus of this project on housing, people, and community will greatly improve the Tree Streets neighborhood and the lives of the families that call it home.”
In the coming weeks, a HUD team will hold virtual site visits to meet with the five finalists and their partners to get a clear understanding of their individual Transformation Plans. HUD anticipates announcing the final awards in late April or May.