$20 million project will add housing options on Jacksonville's Westside

Jacksonville City Hall.

Ability Housing broke ground on a new affordable housing project that it says will help the issue of affordable housing in Jacksonville.

The project, Village at Hyde Park, will provide 80 housing opportunities for people in need. Ability Housing said it costs nearly $20 million, with funding from the City of Jacksonville, federal grant money and JP Morgan and Chase, in addition to private funds.

“Housing prices have gone up since the recovery, everybody’s home prices have gone up, values have gone up, rent has gone up as well, and wages just haven’t kept pace,” Shannon Nazworth said. She is the company’s president and CEO.

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Some city council members have described the Jacksonville affordable housing issue as a crisis and support the Village at Hyde Park.

“Here in Jacksonville you have the working poor, you have people that don’t make a decent wage,” District 9 Councilman Garrett Dennis said. “They’re going to work every day but they don’t make enough money to have a decent place to stay.”

Action News Jax found a study that compares the growing population to the number of housing options in Duval County. From 2000 to present, the population almost doubles each year compared to the number of housing options available.

He said he has worked directly with Ability Housing to find solutions for his district. They agree they need the collaboration of the city, local organizations and funding from the state to make a difference.

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