Wheatley Courts, on San Antonio's Eastside, is the site of the Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grant. The grant funded an extensive community planning effort to develop the Wheatley Choice Transformation Plan, which was the basis for SAHA's Choice nearly $30 million Choice Neighborhoods Implementation Grant application, submitted to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in April 2012. Grant awards are pending.
Summary of Transformation Plan (Click here to view the transformation plan)
Housing. The Housing Vision is centered on the targeted site, Wheatley Courts, and a nearby mixed-income community, Sutton Oaks. The Housing Plan is to convert Wheatley Courts, an obsolete, inefficient, inaccessible, and unsafe public housing site, into a 305-unit, high quality, mixed-income community. In addition, it will build off of SAHA’s 194-unit, mixed-income Sutton Oaks Phase I, and add an additional 286 mixed-income units in Sutton Oaks II and III, while saving a key piece of land for commercial/retail development. The Plan will result in one-for-one replacement of the public housing units and will ensure long-term affordability in a diverse, mixed-income community. Not only is the revitalization of the Wheatley site and the continued transformation of the Sutton Oaks area an integral part of the Transformation Plan for the Eastside neighborhood, this stable, safe, energy-efficient, accessible, connected, mixed-income community will be the anchor supporting other non-physical efforts in the community, including a Promise Neighborhood initiative.
People. Positive outcomes for Wheatley Courts residents will be achieved through on-site case management providing a range of needed services and backed by a network of SAHA and community service providers.
In response to community needs and residents’ interests in seeking work, a particular emphasis will be on expanding job readiness, training and placement programs through SAHA’s Moving to Work Program, Goodwill Industries’ Good Careers Academy, and St. Philips College. Improved access to health care and services aimed at improving residents’ health will occur through expansion of a Metro Health clinic, better connection to the Frank Bryant Health Center, and programmed green spaces around the neighborhood. United Way’s Eastside Promise Neighborhood will implement cradle to college/career programs for children, youth and adults. Urban’s case management team will coordinate closely with the EPN team to ensure that family supports enhance comprehensive educational efforts and create a community of Choice. Public safety will be improved by more consistent, positive communication between law enforcement and residents.
Neighborhood. SAHA seeks to redevelop Wheatley Courts and San Antonio’s Eastside into a walkable, safe, compact, mixed used, pedestrian friendly neighborhood of opportunity containing a wide range of amenities. SAHA’s goals for the master planned neighborhood are to: increase park space; implement Byrne Act-funded crime prevention and safety-enhancing activities in partnership with EPN; establish a community garden and produce co-op; coordinate placement of a multi-modal transit hub to link Wheatley Courts residents with anchor institutions and employment centers; and, construct a community center that serves as a focal point for youth, arts, neighborhood beautification and community engagement.
The Transformation Plan builds from existing assets, e.g., microloans by San Antonio for Growth on the Eastside for new business starts; internal and external workforce development training and adult education; proximity to two major employment centers (Fort Sam Houston and downtown); and, significant investments by the City in the target area. The Eastside Choice Neighborhood is aligned with the Eastside Promise Neighborhood, SA2020 (a community-wide strategic planning process), and the Eastside Reinvestment Summits organized by a City Councilmember and the Mayor.
Lead Applicant: San Antonio Housing Authority.
Principal Team Members:
Housing Implementation Entity: McCormack Baron Salazar.
People Implementation Entity: Urban Strategies.
Education Implementation Entity: United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County.
Neighborhood Implementation Entity: San Antonio Housing Authority.
How Neighborhood Boundaries Were Established: To maximize leverage and an existing redevelopment foundation, neighborhood boundaries were chosen in correspondence to the City’s reinvestment strategies for the Eastside and the footprint of the Eastside Promise Neighborhood.
Funding Requested: $29,750,000 in Choice Neighborhood funding over five years.
Neighborhood: Eastside of San Antonio, census tracts 1307.001, 1306 and 1305
Ø Monday, April 7, 10 a.m., Wheatley Middle School: Beautification project Plant Flowers in Courtyard
Ø -Friday, April 9-11, 10 a.m., Hays, Lamar, Arthur and Gabriel: Debris Pick up and Removal Infill Streets
Ø Friday, April 11th, 10 a.m., Antioch Christian Academy Plant Flowers and Debris Removal
Ø Friday, April 11th, 10 am, Antioch Community Transformation Network (ACTN) Debris Removal and Clean Up
Ø Friday, April 11th, 10 a.m., New Mt Pleasant Baptist Church Lawn Care