FORT WORTH, Texas — For 64 years, countless families have called Cavile Place home.
Karen Tucker has lived here on and off her entire life. But there’s a chance now the east-side housing development she calls home won’t exist for much longer. "I was born in Cavile apartments," Tucker said. "Right here on Calumet Street."
"They’re so old, they’ve been here so long," she said of the Stop Six housing development. "Everything needs to be re-done."
Thursday evening, the board of commissioners for Fort Worth Housing Solutions, the city’s municipal housing authority, voted to apply for federal money to tear Cavile Place down. They’d likely replace it with mixed-income housing, retail and commercial properties.
"Cavile place was built in the 1950s," explained president Mary-Margaret Lemons. "It needs over $40 million of repairs to bring it up to modern day standards." It’d be less expensive, she says, to rebuild the whole thing.
If Cavile gets demolished, the 760 people who live in the Stop Six development would need to move out. Lemons says they’re also applying for ‘tenant protection vouchers,’ which would allow residents to find affordable replacement housing.
"We won’t do anything unless we get the vouchers. That’s our number one priority is to relocate our residents successfully," Lemons said, adding that if residents need help with the vouchers, packing or even moving, staff will help.
City Councilwoman Gyna Bivens supports the efforts. "The key is it’s time for people to have a fresh outlook to have housing options," she said.
Karen Tucker supports it, too. "It needs a real big makeover," Tucker said. "I think it’d be nice if they could get some parks back in here for the kids."
Moving, she says, would be an inconvenience. But in the long run, she says she’d like to see new life brought to her lifelong home. "It would probably make everybody feel better, make the kids feel better, you know," she said.
Staff says if they’re given the green light by HUD, they’ll start working with tenants on planning for relocation early next year, and it would be at least a year before demolition would begin.