HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — Demolition work is scheduled to begin Monday at a Huntington public housing unit that’s been around for almost 75 years. Three units of Northcott Court will undergo the wrecking ball over the next few weeks. It’s the first phase of a three phase project to clear the property.
The Huntington Housing Authority began looking at other options for the buildings adjacent to Hal Greer Blvd. last year after the urging of city leaders. Mayor Steve Williams said last September Northcott Court residents deserved better after six people were shot there.
Housing Authority Administrative Assistant Lee Green said there are three main reasons for the demolition including the age of the buildings, the city’s desire for commercial development on the property and the safety of residents.
“A big reason is that when they expanded Hal Greer Blvd. it moved the road a lot closer to our units,” Green said.
The first phase of the demolition will take down the three closest units to the busy street eliminating 30 residences.
Green said those who lived chose whether to move to other public housing units in Huntington or obtained vouchers to rent from a private landlords. He said the relocation efforts have gone smoothly.
“The planning process was done well in advance, so there’s not a whole lot of having to wait for things,” Green said. “We’ve tried to hold units in preparation for some who are wanting to move.”
Phase 2 will include removing the three units on the rear of the property while the final phase will take down the exterior units on either side of the complex.
Green said Northcott Court has served its purpose providing affordable housing for thousands of Huntington residents for nearly three-quarters of a century.
The Huntington Housing Authority will maintain ownership of the property and initially lease it to interested developers.