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Affordable workforce housing coming to Port Aransas

Posted at 7:08 PM, Oct 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-22 20:48:00-04

Workforce housing has been at a premium in Port Aransas since Hurricane Harvey, but Thursday the city celebrated a ground breaking for Palladium Port Aransas, a first of its kind development there.

Thursday’s groundbreaking was a mere formality, because the foundation for the complex is already laid. There’s never been a development like this in Port Aransas. 182 units, specifically designed to house the city’s workforce.

City leaders say Port Aransas needs a place to house its workforce. Soon, Palladium Port Aransas will be the place.

“So much of our workforce is either coming up the island road or they’re sitting in the ferry line for an hour each day, each way,” said Port Aransas City Manager David Parsons.

Mayor Charles Bujan called the project a dreamland. He says he believes Palladium will help Port A’s workforce live where they work.

“That’s the game-changer,” said Bujan. This will provide them with another alternative so they can live here and not have to go through the ferry wait, not have to go through the traffic on (TX-)361.

Eighty percent of the 182 units will be for low income families, the other 20% will be rented at market rate. City leaders first came up with the idea in 2013, but it wasn’t until Hurricane Harvey that the need became dire.

“It took the hurricane and all the damage to the workforce housing to kind of prod the city to really buckle down,” said Parsons.

Palladium will pay for roughly half the project. The rest will come from the Department of Housing and Community Affairs. That means no city or county money will be spent.

“$36 million project, not a penny to the taxpayer to Port Aransas,” said Parsons. “We’re really excited.”

Officials say the first building, the clubhouse, should be finished in about 14 months, with the one of the complex’s four apartment buildings opening every month after. The leasing office will start taking applications 120 days before the first apartments open.