Mt. Vernon Register-News

May 10, 2013

Housing Study work nearing completion

By TESA GLASS
tesa.glass@register-news.com

---- — MT. VERNON — The city's housing and marketing project is nearing completion of the next phase."This part is the marketing aspect of it," said Nathan McKenna, City Capital Projects Manager. "It will be for developers, lenders and builders."The need for housing within the city was discovered as part of a study that was presented in January to the city council. The study, completed by Joe Zanola of the Zanola Company LLC, identified the need for 350 to 750 housing units based on past and expected job creation in the area. The next phase of the project was to create a web-based outreach program. The Internet program is to include the Just Right web site and establish monthly e-mails, blogs and web updates to entice building professionals; establish an ever-growing target, prospect and referrals database; provide outreach blitz to reconnect and advance current interested projects; and provide personal outreach, follow-up and scheduling with high value prospects."Right now, we're streamlining the process and getting everyone on the same page," McKenna explained. "We're developing the website for the housing program, which will be a one stop shop for developers and lenders to get up to date information."As an example, McKenna said the site will contain information about the process for building a subdivision, where the process starts, who to contact and everyone's part in the process, staring with the city engineer, inspection, fire department, zoning and building, and include the Jefferson County Development Corporation, which receives many first contacts from developers."We will be doing staff training next week, with a workshop on (May) 15," McKenna said. "Everyone will be given the same information, and everyone will know their part in the process."Once the training is completed, the city council will be updated as well, with a city council workshop planned for May 28.