Providing neighborhood residents with safe, secure housing is important for any community. Developing affordable and market rate rental and for-sale housing in West Oak Lane is a priority for OARC. For more than 25 years, we have worked diligently to make our community one of the most livable neighborhoods in Northwest Philadelphia by working with rental housing owners provide affordable housing in the community.
Economic development is equally important in our approach to community revitalization. Today we own close to 300,000 square feet of commercial space leased to a variety of businesses. These projects have generated thousands of permanent and construction-related jobs. OARC has also helped create daycare facilities, along with job training and job placement programs. We regularly work with businesses in the neighborhood, providing technical assistance and financial support.
As of 2017, OARC is starting another Streetscape Project that will stretch from Stenton Avenue and Rittenhouse to Mt. Airy Avenue. Projects such as this allows the community to enjoy safe streets via lightening, and traffic monitoring.
In 2011, we completed construction of the Ogontz Avenue Streetscape Project. Grants from the City of Philadelphia's ReStore Philadelphia Corridors Program and the State's Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) funded this $2.6 million project. Improvements and upgrades were made to a ten block stretch of Ogontz Avenue; including sidewalk and crosswalk paving features, roadway curbs, landscaping, benches, and pedestrian lighting. This project is strengthening the local economic infrastructure by improving the appearance of one of the most heavily traveled streets in Northwest Philadelphia. Residents in the neighborhood have also benefited from the added safety and pedestrian-friendly elements resulting from this project.
In June 2010, we acquired the old Club Jaguar building from the Redevelopment Authority of Philadelphia. The property, shuttered by the City as a notorious nuisance bar, was purchased for $1 dollar under the terms of a redeveloper's agreement. OARC received a $1.2 million RACP grant to redevelop the site. Demolition at the site began in early 2011; full scale construction will begin this summer. Now known as our Gateway Project, when completed, it will feature retail and office space with off-street parking for more than 20 vehicles.
A common theme to all of our economic development initiatives is JOBS, JOBS, JOBS! We're always looking for ways to get people to work, and keep them working. With so many more projects in the planning phase, we'll be doing our best to improve the quality of life for everyone in West Oak Lane. We are fully committed to creating and sustaining economic growth for the residents and businesses in our community.
Any questions, please contact us at 215 549-9462