MDHA breaks ground on new apartment complex

Cherry Oak Apartments
Posted at 5:14 PM, May 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-04 19:35:15-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — While there’s an affordable housing crisis, hope is on the horizon, housing advocates said.

With rent rising, people are being pushed out of their homes. Renter Michael Hatcher knows all about the struggle.

"Bills is getting higher and higher, and the price is going higher and higher, and food going higher and higher," Hatcher said.

At Stand Up Nashville, Nathaniel Carter expects a flood of people to become homeless soon.

"Your restaurant servers, your cab drivers, and things of that nature, even your public school teachers, these people need places to live too,” Carter said, “So they’re displacing these families, and they’re displacing these people because guess what, they’re for the green dollars."

On the bright side, the Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency broke ground on the Cherry Oak Apartments at Cayce Place on Wednesday.

It's a mixed-income development. It will include 96 apartments, 53 of which are considered affordable.

"And I’ve been able to witness them moving into their new units, and it is truly a blessing to be able to watch it because they are so excited and it’s just a wonderful day," MDHA spokesperson Jamie Berry said.

She said Amazon is providing a $7.1 million low-interest loan to the MDHA for the redevelopment.

"Amazon made a commitment nearly a year ago to provide affordable housing in Nashville to the tune of $75 million, and we are grateful to be the first major investment that they’ve made in Nashville," Berry said.

While there are several affordable housing projects underway across the area, it’s only a drop in the bucket.

"Final thoughts — we need city officials to understand that the people in Nashville need their help. Don’t turn this into a big corporation place,” Carter said, “Yeah, they say Nashville, Tennessee, is 'it city,' but you still have people that are here in the 'it city,' who built this city, who are being displaced."

As part of their deal with the city, the Amazon Housing Equity Fund also announced they awarded a grant to a nonprofit that's building transitional housing for people in need.