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Meridian Manor in Washington, D.C.
Residents Defy Odds to Save their Homes
National Housing Trust/Enterprise, in partnership with community-based affordable housing developer Mi Casa, helped tenants acquire a 34-unit apartment building after years of owner neglect and deteriorating conditions.
Meridian Manor residents endured years of severe housing code violations until they were awarded the building in a lawsuit against the owner. The residents successfully took title of the historic building after forming the Archbishop Rivera y Damas Cooperative in 1994, but were forced to leave the property because they were unable to raise the remaining funds necessary to complete the needed renovations. Led by a determined resident, Leroy Washington, the residents chose to fight for their homes despite being displaced and found their way to the non-profit developer Mi Casa. Mi Casa brought its neighborhood expertise to the project and sought out NHT/Enterprise for its financing expertise.
Today, all Meridian Manor residents have incomes at or below 50 percent of area median income and about two-thirds of tenants are single mothers. Children have access to many enrichment opportunities overseen by NHT/Enterprise. They can play on the building’s new playground, surf the internet in the computer lab, and participate in after school activities. Adults also have access to many opportunities, including computer, GED, and financial literacy classes.