On November 8, 1971, the Pennington County Commission appointed a five-member board composed of Robert J. Deal, Chairman; John Mickelson, Secretary; Mark Brave, Treasurer; Harold Shunk, and Joseph Butler to serve as the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission. Their organizational meeting, wherein regular meeting dates and By-Laws were established, was held on May 20, 1972.
The ink had barely dried on the documents establishing the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission when, on June 9th, the catastrophic flood of 1972 occurred. Thus, the Board was immediately propelled into action by the demanding need for replacement housing for low-income families and the elderly. On June 16, 1972, following many hours in special meetings, the Housing Authority made application to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for 700 housing units --300 elderly and 400 non-elderly. HUD promptly responded, and on July 7th granted 460 units of conventional low-rent housing to the Pennington County Housing Authority. Two hundred (200) of these units were designated as elderly and 260 as non-elderly.
The process of developing these housing units was immediately begun by the Board of Commissioners. This was a complex and demanding task involving land acquisition and project design. HUD released the first 253 units for construction in December, 1972, and two projects were underway.
SD06P045001, two high-rise apartment buildings for the elderly, Jackson Heights and Valley View.
SD06P045002, consisting of 50 family dwellings in scattered locations within Rapid City.
The remainder of the allocated units were temporarily delayed by the 1973 Nixon Administration moratorium on housing projects. Because Rapid City was a declared disaster area, they were finally released and a total of 476 units were ultimately constructed with funding provided by HUD.
SD06P045003, Prairie Village, is a 28 unit elderly project in Wall, South Dakota.
SD06P045004 consists of 24 family dwellings within Rapid City.
SD06P045005 & SD06P045006 involved the purchase of 48 flood homes from the Rapid City Urban Renewal Agency and their subsequent relocation to the Sheridan Heights area in Rapid City. This outstanding single family housing project, which was the first in the United States of its type, became the subject of laudatory comment and favorable publicity on a nationwide basis.
SD06P045007, River Ridge, is a third high-rise apartment building for the elderly. It contains 56 units and was constructed in 1978 on an urban renewal site near Rapid City's Rushmore Plaza Civic Center.
SD06P045008, Edwards Manor, consists of three one-story structures comprising 37 apartment units. It was completed in 1977 and leased to the Black Hills Workshop and Training Center to house the developmentally disabled persons served by the center.
Project SD06P045009 consists of 14 two-bedroom townhouses and 16 three bedroom single family dwellings. This project was built in 1979 in the Robbinsdale area (southeastern Rapid City) using the "turn-key" construction method.
Projects 006-608-8, Sunny Haven Apartments, and SD99-R000-009, Hillyo Manor Apartments, differ in that they were financed through the Farmers Home Administration. Although the Board attempted to procure HUD funding as before, their efforts were not successful. These projects consisting of 49 apartments for the elderly were also erected in 1979. Sunny Haven Apartments has 25 units and is located in New Underwood, South Dakota; Hillyo Manor Apartments is a 24-unit project located in Hill City, South Dakota.
The Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission received a grant in the amount of $1,858,500 from the Department of Housing and Urban Development for the acquisition without rehabilitation of 25 homes in newer neighborhoods.These purchases were completed in 1989 and 1990. Despite protests that were raised during the course of public hearings over Public Housing being located in these neighborhoods, the program has been and continues to be successful.
Before 1992, the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission administered rental assistance to only 106 families under the Section 8 Certificate/Voucher Rental Assistance Program.However this number was increased in 1992 as the South Dakota Housing Development Authority turned over to the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission 575 Certificates/Vouchers it had been administering in Pennington County. By 1992 the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission had grown to an agency serving 1230 families between all the programs.
In 1996, the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission opened its first new development since 1990. Construction was completed on Black Fox Manor, a 24 unit family development in southern Rapid City. These units, including four fully accessible units, were financed with HOME funds through the South Dakota Housing Development Authority, CDBG funds through the City of Rapid City, and conventional mortgage financing through Norwest Bank of South Dakota in addition to Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission funds. This development differs significantly from traditional Public Housing Developments in that it has no ongoing operating subsidy attached to it.
1996 also saw the construction of Harney View Apartments, a 15 unit development in North Rapid City.This project was developed in conjunction with Development for the Disabled, a local nonprofit agency, and was built with funding from the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission, CDBG funds through the City of Rapid City, and HOME funds through the South Dakota Housing Development Authority.
Construction of Memorial Park Apartments was completed in 1998 and marked the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission's first experience with Tax Credit financing and its first new development for the Elderly in more than twenty years. Ownership in this 61 unit development is vested in Memorial Park Apartments, Limited Partnership. A non-profit corporation, Memorial Park Apartments, Inc., was established by the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission to act as the General Partner in this partnership. Management of the project is provided by the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission. At the end of the fifteen year Tax Credit compliance period, the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission has the option to become the sole owner of the development.
While there has not been any additional development since 1998, the Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission has maintained the goal of acquiring additional land for future development to be able to address any future housing needs. 2.34 acres was purchased in the MJK subdivision of Rapid City in 2005, 1.09 acres was purchased in the McMahon subdivision in 2006, and 7 acres was purchased in the McMahon subdivision in 2007 using Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission funds.
The Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission has had measured success in growing its Section 8 program. As of 2008, it administers 1234 Housing Choice Vouchers. The agency has also been a willing participant in many programs targeting special groups. These programs include the Family Self-Sufficiency program, Family Unification program, Preservation Vouchers, Shelter-Plus-Care program, Section 8 Home Ownership, Veteran Affairs Support Housing, and privately funded housing vouchers just to name a few.
The Pennington County Housing and Redevelopment Commission will not only continue to work toward recognizing the housing needs of our community, but will also work with other supportive service agencies in addressing that need through the expansion and improvement of existing programs as well as the creation of new programs.