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Vacant lot in neighborhood north of downtown Des Moines to be site of new housing development


DES MOINES, Iowa — A lot north of downtown Des Moines that's been vacant for year is expected to be the site of a new housing development.

A $5 million project is planned for the lot at 6th Street and Forest Avenue, Des Moines television station KCCI reports (http://bit.ly/1O1sDob ).

The designs for the three-story apartment building show layouts for 30-units of one- and two-bedroom housing. Private developer Jack Hatch said his agency is applying for state housing tax credits to help finance the project.

"Private investors will then help keep the rents low so lower-income and lower working families can afford to have the great housing that we build and that they deserve," Hatch said.

Residents say they're hopeful the project could help stimulate even more development.

Urban Dreams associate director Izaah Knox lives in the River Bend neighborhood, and his office is right across the street from the proposed apartments.

"Building good, affordable, clean housing that people will be proud of is something that we've always known is something that should happen in this community," Knox said.

Knox said he hopes the project will help attract more people to the area and also change the neighborhood's current stigma.

"We just need an opportunity to change those negative perceptions that have been out there for so long," he said.

The development's application for tax credits goes before the Des Moines City Council on Monday.

Information from: KCCI-TV, http://www.kcci.com

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