HACEP Unveils Newest Community at Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
Sherman Plaza in Central El Paso
EL PASO, Texas – The Housing Authority of the City of El Paso, Texas (HACEP), alongside prominent local leaders and community partners, on Friday officially unveiled the newly reconstructed Sherman Plaza during a ribbon-cutting ceremony in Central El Paso. The LEED-certified affordable housing community brought in a $24 million dollar investment and adds 34 new homes to the original 144 pre-existing homes expanding the agency’s ability to assist more families.
“The completion of Sherman Plaza is another step towards improving the quality of life for HACEP residents while redefining affordable housing in El Paso, and also across the nation,” said HACEP CEO Gerald Cichon. “We are setting the course for sustainability and quality of life through El Paso’s affordable housing market over the next 40 years, which plays an integral part in the economic growth and development of our region.”
Sherman Plaza is part of HACEP’s overall $1.3 Billion mission to revitalize its entire housing portfolio through the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program. By 2020, HACEP will have revitalized over 6,300 affordable homes – an effort currently unmatched in the United States.
“HACEP’s efforts to revitalize the affordable housing market plays a critical role in El Paso’s economic development,” said El Paso Mayor Dee Margo. “The quality of our neighborhoods is an important factor when businesses look at El Paso as a viable market for expansion, and HACEP’s efforts ensure these areas are points of pride.”
Originally constructed in 1953 in Central El Paso, Sherman-Plaza was the fourth community added to HACEP’s portfolio and is one of the largest in the city. The reconstruction of Sherman Plaza, which began in late 2016, included demolishing 18 low-rise buildings – 144 residential homes – and the construction of 34 new homes, culminating in 178 brand new affordable homes.
“The completion of Sherman Plaza exemplifies our outstanding partnership with HACEP as it continues its RAD initiative,” said Sundt District Director Joseph Riccillo. “We all worked closely together to maximize the use of the land to increase HACEP’s ability to serve more families while implementing sustainable and energy-efficient qualities with integral partnerships like El Paso Electric.”
Additional amenities and improvements to the site include: A new community center, youth center, two new playgrounds, an updated athletic court and new picnic areas. Many of the energy efficient qualities, including the Energy-Star appliances, were made possible through a partnership with El Paso Electric.
Through the use of an El Paso Electric (EPE) energy efficiency program, HACEP’s Sherman Plaza property installed more than 175 new HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) units. These new units will optimize the efficiency of these residences. Since 2015, HACEP has completed numerous energy efficiency projects utilizing EPE energy efficiency incentives and has saved approximately 1.2 million kilowatt hours of electricity, the equivalent of removing nearly 200 cars off the road for one year.
“We’re happy to partner with organizations like HACEP in order to help encourage energy efficiency throughout affordable housing properties while also generating other environmental and economic benefits for the local community and region,” said Susanne Stone, El Paso Electric’s Director of Energy Efficiency and Commercial Services. “These measures really help encourage energy efficiency and conservation, especially as we enter the summer season when energy usage increases.”
For more info on HACEP’s revitalization effort: http://www.hacep.org/about-us/rad
The Housing Authority of the City El Paso, TX (HACEP), the 14th largest housing authority in the United States and manages the 2nd largest public housing portfolio in Texas. Home to the first NetZero, fossil fuel free, LEED Platinum affordable housing community in the U.S., HACEP provides high-quality housing assistance to over 40,000 low-income El Pasoans through its Public Housing, Housing Choice Voucher, Tax Credit, Non-Subsidized and Section 8 New Construction programs.
About El Paso Electric
El Paso Electric is a regional electric utility providing generation, transmission and distribution service to approximately 418,900 retail and wholesale customers in a 10,000 square mile area of the Rio Grande valley in west Texas and southern New Mexico.
Sundt Construction, Inc. (www.sundt.com) is one of the country’s largest and most respected general contractors. The 128-year-old firm specializes in transportation, industrial and building work and is known for its commitment to quality and innovative approach to construction services. Sundt has offices throughout Texas, Arizona, California and Utah and is 100 percent owned by its approximately 2,000 employees. The company is consistently ranked among the Best Places to Work by business publications in multiple cities and it was twice named the nation’s safest construction company by the Associated General Contractors of America – an honor no other contractor can claim. Sundt’s charitable arm, the Sundt Foundation, recently crossed the $8.5 million mark in donations made to hundreds of nonprofit organizations across the country.