Next week, Austin City Council will take up a major issue on the housing front. Cactus Rose Mobile Park is set to be demolished early next year and replaced with market-rate apartments. The proposal is not sitting well with residents.
Richard Williams has lived in the Cactus Rose for three years. But he recently received some news.
"Well, looks like we're going to have to move," Williams said.
Developer, Oden Hughes, plans to build a 350 unit market rate apartment development that will have some other mixed use spaces as well.
“We have over 50 families presently living at the Cactus Rose who could be totally displaced,” Susana Almanza, President of Montopolis Neighborhood Association, said.
The developer is offering money but many say it's nothing that can get them into another place or enough to buy another home
“When I thought I was getting $10,000 I said ok I’ll be able to do something with that. When it came down to $5,000 I was like....ok,” Williams said.
Moving the homes is not an option either.
“95 percent of them own their trailer homes or RV’s but because of the age of their trailer homes no one will take on the liability of moving them because they say they'll fall apart,” Almanza said.
City Council is expected to take on the issue. On the table are two plans that could help the residents. Plan one is for Oden Hughes to set aside three acres of land to build a trailer park and purchase new or used trailers for the residents.
“Plan two is the city provides the land, the developer still pays for new or used trailers and a non-profit entity is established to manage the trailer park,” Almanza said.
Both situations would keep the homeowners and renters, right here. Oden Hughes is giving everyone until December to move out. FOX 7 contacted the developer for an interview but they never returned our calls.
As for Williams, he's not sure what's next. “I have no idea, I have my emergency plan.”
“It is a case of whether City Council is just talking about affordability and gentrification or are they really going to do something,” Almanza said.