The Neighborhood Resource Center
The collaboration between public, private and non-profit entities is essential for positive community growth. The strengthening of the bond between these three entities is critical to the long-term survivability of our neighborhoods. It is the recognition of the importance of partnerships in community growth that started the formation of the Neighborhood Resource Center. An informed staff and access to a wealth of information specifically designed to encourage rehabilitation throughout Williamsport, as well as helping to increase homeownership are examples of the services a neighborhood resource can provide.
The Neighborhood Resource Center is located in a former condemned building at 854 West Third Street in Williamsport. The building was purchased by the Lycoming Neighborhood Development Corporation (LNDC) in January of 2000 and was renovated at a cost of approximately $110,000. The building stands as a testament to adaptive reuse to encourage investment and development in our city's depressed neighborhoods. Currently 854 West Third Street is home to "Our Towns 2010" and LNDC-spaced is reserved to house The Neighborhood Resource Center that will provide the following vital services to our community. Promoting private investment in Williamsport's Low-Moderate income neighborhoods by utilizing aggressive marketing strategies and web-based tools such as hyperlinks and web sites - For example - OurTown2010. Serving as a clearing house for the distribution of information for first-time home buyers and available programs for eligible participants in low/moderate home ownership initiatives. Conduce seminars with the assistance of local lending institutions on home buying. Compile databases that contain information on contractors who specialize in rehabilitation of older buildings and make the databases easily accessible to the general public.
The deterioration of housing stock within our city limits poses a serious threat to the welfare of our community. This trend can be reversed by concentrating public and private investment in key areas throughout the city. Programs designed for home owners to invest in these key areas will strengthen their equitable stake in the community and therefore reverse the deterioration of housing stock created by absent and apathetic property owners. Unique and forward thinking marketing techniques can be tailored to attract home buyers from outside our community that are intrigued by the affordability of homes in the city.
Positive community and economic growth in our city begins in our neighborhoods. Neglected and blighted houses are not only not attractive, they are seedbeds for illegal activity. Statistics support the blight to crime relationship which is why so many cities throughout our country have initiated aggressive blight busting, neighborhood building programs. Members of our community need to work with a proactive organization that can guide them through the complex array of grants and low interest loans available to them that are targeted for blight elimination.
Home ownership is easily obtainable in Williamsport for low-moderate income persons because of the affordability of many of the older homes available throughout the city.