Roanoke Housing Commissioners Hear How They Could Enhance, Expand Affordable Housing Units

“So your recommendation is, essentially, ‘Do this as quickly as you can,’” the commission's chairman told a consultant.

The Roanoke Redevelopment and Housing Authority is exploring whether to "reposition" to a Section 8 voucher model that would allow it raise more money. Morningside Manor, one of the authority's high-rises for elderly and disabled residents (shown above), is located in southeast Roanoke. ROANOKE RAMBLER FILE PHOTO

Roanoke’s public housing operator should consider moving swiftly to convert its apartments into a housing voucher program that could allow for new construction, renovations and the demolition of old buildings, a new report says.

The Roanoke Redevelopment and Housing Authority oversees apartments and houses for about 5,000 low-income residents across the city.

For more than a decade, the federal government has reduced the amount of money flowing to traditional public housing authorities like the one in Roanoke. That has led many authorities to adopt a new model that allows for private dollars and developers to help enhance and expand the availability of affordable housing.