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Renovation Report: Edwin Towers

CHARLOTTE – What do you do if you’re the Charlotte Housing Authority and one of your affordable-housing communities specifically for the geriatric gets, well, geriatric?

The Charlotte Housing Authority has plans to renovate many of its properties, including Edwin Towers off 10th Street in the Fourth Ward. The 175-unit building was constructed in the late 1960s and will undergo an upgrade costing about $8 million.

The Charlotte Housing Authority has plans to renovate many of its properties, including Edwin Towers off 10th Street in the Fourth Ward. The 175-unit building was constructed in the late 1960s and will undergo an upgrade costing about $8 million.

According to Eric Johnson, the chief development officer at the CHA, you start an $8 million, ground-up renovation project at the Edwin Towers property, off 10th Street in Uptown’s Fourth Ward, and rehabilitate each and every one of the building’s 175 units.

Built in the late 1960s, Edwin Towers over the years has seen some minor renovations and repairs, mainly to paper over cracks or to fix individual units. But until now, the building hadn’t seen a full-on renovation project, Johnson said.

Construction began late last month after Mecklenburg County on Nov. 25 issued four building permits, valued at $6.7 million. The permits were for renovations from the ground floor to the roof, according to county records. Charlotte-based Tyler 2 Construction is the general contractor on the project.

Johnson said the work will be finished by the summer.

“Edwin Towers is an older development, built in the 1960s, in need of rehab to sort of bring it up to more current standards,” he said. “Also this project will assist it in blending in more with the adjacent neighborhood.”

Johnson said the work at Edwin Towers is about 5 percent complete. Construction crews are going into each unit and essentially doing a complete renovation. Of the 175 units at Edwin Towers, 63 are studios, 95 are one-bedroom units and 17 are two-bedroom units, according to the CHA’s website.

“You know the structural issues are going to come first before you get to a point where you round them out with the new furnishings,” Johnson said about the unit-by-unit renovations. Each unit will get new lighting, plumbing and flooring, along with modern kitchens and bathrooms.

During the months of renovations at Edwin Towers, the residents have been moved to another CHA property: Hall House on North Tryon Street. Once the fences come down from around Edwin Towers next summer, the residents will return, Johnson said.

For contractors interested in getting work with the CHA – which is in the process of renovating many of its aging properties – Johnson said all jobs open for bidding are put on demandstar.com, and added that work will continue to be available.

“We can’t build our way out of affordable housing issues so we have to maintain what’s already in our portfolio,” he said.

Project description: The Charlotte Housing Authority is in the process of a ground-up renovation at its Edwin Towers property, which was built in the last 1960s.

Address: 201 W. 10th St., Charlotte

Units: 175

Cost: Roughly $8 million

General contractor: Tyler 2 Construction

Construction began: November

Expected completion: Summer 2014

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