Renovations near for troubled Eureka Gardens apartment complex

Overhaul expected to begin soon after property sale closes next month

By Destiny McKeiver - Multi-media journalist

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Residents of Eureka Gardens could soon see renovations to their homes after a years-long I-TEAM investigation into the complex's deplorable living conditions. 

Millennia Companies is preparing for a $40 million rehabilitation of that complex and three other subsidized housing projects in Jacksonville.

The residents are excited about the changes to come, but say "actions speak louder than words." They're hoping to see some action soon. 

Resident Monalisa Arnold is one of of those who have lived with with mold, crumbling staircases and gas and carbon monoxide leaks in the past.

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I-TEAM's Eureka Gardens reports

It wasn't until the I-TEAM exposed the issues that Mayor Curry, other city leaders and lawmakers in Washington got involved. 

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development approved Millennia to take over active site management of Global Ministries Inc.’s properties in Jacksonville last year, but promised changes have awaited the sale of the properies.

"If they renovate the place and get some security, it'll be really good. We would have peaceful and sanitary housing with what the HUD people say we're supposed to have under the Fair Housing Act. Actions speak louder than words," said Arnold. 

After $126 million will be used to acquire and develop the complexes, Eureka Gardens will be renamed Valencia Way and will have 400 units. Moncrief Village, Southside Apartments and Washington heights Apartments will also be renamed and get overhauls.

Residents hope the changes will boost community morale. 

"We just need Sheriff Mike Williams to up his team around here, to get help form the bullet shots and things like that," said Arnold. 

The renovations could begin soon after the Millennnia deal closes, which is expected next month.

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