Oklahoma City Mayor’s panel gives awards

Turning Point Ministries was featured in the October 30, 2009 NewsOK article, “Oklahoma City Mayor’s panel gives awards.”

The Oklahoma City Mayor’s Committee on Disability Concerns gave awards Thursday to outstanding Oklahomans with disabilities and their advocates.
The committee’s purpose is to erase architectural, social and attitudinal barriers to people with disabilities.
Todd Craighead won the George B. Lewis Advocacy Award.
Tinker Air Force Base was named Employer of the Year.
The Public Personnel Employee Award went to Michael O’Brien, Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services.
Other honors included Media Public Service Award to Susan Simpson, The Oklahoman; Media Public Affairs Award to Kevin Ogle, KFOR-4; and special awards to Wayne Rhode, Crystal Rushing and The Rev. Gary Stevens.
The Don Davis Advocacy Award was given to Kuang-Hua Chang.
Scott Ellis was named Mayor’s Committee on Disability Concerns Member of the Year.
Several organizations and individuals received Clearing the Path Awards: Barnett Homes, Dan Peterson, Don Hildebrand Homes, Michelle Hughes, Central Oklahoma Habitat for Humanity, Turning Point Ministries, Virginia Moore, Ryan Schamerhorn, Bonnie Bower, Todd Isaac Homes and Pat McAlister.
The Clearing the Path Award highlights an Oklahoma City residential building and its architect, designer, builder, contractor and/or owner for universal design in making the home accessible to people with disabilities.
Winners of the poster contest were: Caleb Ferris, Classen School of Advanced Studies, first; Gabriel Martinez, Putnam City West High School, second; and Lizbeth Del Castillo, Putnam City West High School, third.

Housing group targets single mothers

Turning Point Ministries was featured in The Edmond Sun on May 27, 2009, in Mark Schlachtenhaufen’s article, “Housing group targets single mothers.”

EDMOND — Connecting eligible buyers with affordable housing in Edmond is the goal of a new organization.

Turning Point Ministries is a nonprofit housing organization established to help individuals living in inferior housing situations find affordable homes, said Bob Turner, a member of the organization’s board of directors.

Turner said the ministry’s primary target audience is single mothers who would like to own a home in Edmond but are priced out of the market.

Others could be helped as well. Board member Dick Freeman said he heard that 10,000 Oklahoma families registered with the Oklahoma Housing Finance Agency are eligible to buy a house if housing were available.

Freeman said a fair number of these families likely are living in Edmond or in the Oklahoma City metro area. And, he said, many potential beneficiaries work in the service industry.

Turning Point Build 1 - Painting

“Most workers in the service industry can’t afford to rent or buy in Edmond and have to commute,” Freeman said. “With the rising prices of gas, getting to work is getting more expensive.”

Many homes in Edmond aren’t cheap either. The average home price in Edmond was $234,047 in 2007, according to the Edmond Economic Development Authority. More than half of existing home inventory in the city is priced between the $225,000 to $1 million price range. Edmond land is also expensive, Turner said.

Addressing potential concerns that more affordable homes might decrease neighboring property values, Turner said affordable land likely will be available in areas in need of renewal. The brick multi-bedroom homes with two-car garages likely will increase property value in these areas, Turner said.

Freeman said due to the desire to buy real estate, board members wanted to keep the ministry separate from First Presbyterian.

Turner said Turning Point is coordinating with Habitat so that resources from First Presbyterian can be used to provide Habitat homes for church members and families in the community. The ministry also informs clients about other resources, he said.

Ann Felton, chairwoman and CEO of Habitat’s local chapter, said the new Edmond ministry fills a void.

“I think it’s wonderful,” Felton said of Turning Point Ministries. “There’s a great need for affordable housing in Edmond.”

Turner said the ministry’s plans are to build three homes annually and eventually develop a neighborhood of 12-15 such homes in Edmond. Transitional houses, a bridge for potential homeowners between current situations and future homes, also are planned.

Freeman said Edmond will benefit from having more hard-working taxpaying residents and state government would have lower public housing costs.


Edmond homes may get energy upgrades

Turning Point Ministries was featured in the Daily Oklahoman on May 23, 2009, in Diana Baldwin’s article, “Edmond homes may get energy upgrades: Project Expands To Nearby Properties.”

EDMOND — Rental property adjacent to Legacy Station, a low-cost home project near downtown Edmond, may get $50,000 in energy improvements compliments of federal stimulus money.

Shannon Entz, Edmond’s Community Development Block Grant coordinator, said about 10 homes adjacent to the new Legacy Station homes have been identified for rehabilitation or weatherization improvements.

Edmond homes may get energy upgrades

Edmond is expected to receive two federal stimulus grants totaling $225,567. City officials propose spending $50,000 of that money on the adjacent rental property.

The remainder of the money, $175,567, will go to build the infrastructure for Legacy Station, a joint project of the city of Edmond and Turning Point Ministries.

The new single-family and duplex homes will be built between Edwards and Thatcher and west of Broadway. The lots were purchased by Turning Point Ministries, a nonprofit ministry that assists in the housing needs of those in Edmond living in substandard conditions.

Turning Point will build the three- and four-bedroom homes with two baths and single-car garages. The homes will be between 1,110 and 1,300 square feet.

The homebuyers will meet Department of Housing and Urban Development income limits, must attend homebuyer education classes and invest in sweat equity.

Planning commissioners this week approved the preliminary plat for Legacy Station. City council members will make a final decision on the preliminary plat June 8.

For the adjacent rental property, low-interest loans will be offered to the property owners to add energy upgrades, such as geothermal heating and cooling units, low-e windows, insulation, caulking and Energy Star fixtures and appliances.

Each home will be inspected and tested for lead-based paint and any other hazardous or unsafe conditions, Entz said.
City council members will hold a public hearing Tuesday and are considering amending this year’s Community Development Block Grant Action Plan to include the stimulus money and projects.

They meet at 5:30 p.m. at 20 S Littler Ave.

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Edmond group helps make room for low-cost homes

Turning Point Ministries was featured in the Daily Oklahoman on May 16, 2009, in Diana Baldwin’s article, “Edmond group helps make room for low-cost homes.”

EDMOND — An old, rundown area of Edmond is changing.

Two tiny houses, in need of serious repair, are coming down as a part of plans to build Legacy Station, a housing addition with 13 new, low-cost homes, said Bob Turner, president of Turning Point Ministries.

The new homes, to be built between Edwards and Thatcher and west of Broadway, are possible through a partnership with the city of Edmond and Turning Point Ministries.

Turning Point Build 2

Turning Point Ministries, a nonprofit organization that assists in the housing needs of those in Edmond living in sub-standard conditions, has purchased the 12 lots with additional space for a playgroud.

Edmond city officials have been promised almost $175,000 in federal stimulus money that they plan to spend to improve the infrastructure to make way for the new homes.

Water and sewer lines will be replaced and extended, and a street will be installed so the 13 owner-occupied homes can be built, said Shannon Entz, the community block grant coordinator.

Turning Point will build the three- and four-bedroom homes with two baths and single-car garages. The homes will be between 1,100 and 1,300 square feet, Turner said.

“It is great to see what can happen in this area and how it will affect people’s lives,” he said. “It gives a foundation of responsibility and well-being.
“We will improve an area in the community that isn’t going anywhere.”
Habitat for Humanity has received five applications for houses in Legacy Station. Two of the applicants have already been approved, Turner said.
Turner hopes construction will begin in late September or early October. He said they will start on two or three houses first. He anticipates a house can be constructed in five or six weeks.

Habitat for Humanity hasn’t built much in Edmond because of the high cost of land in the community. That is where Turning Point Ministries comes into play by buying the lots, Turner said.

The ministry is in its second year.

A house in Legacy Station that was going to be torn down was given to a tornado victim.

The house was in fair condition, but needed repairs and did not fit into the plans for the new housing addition, Turner said.

In addition to buying the lots, the ministry purchased a step-up home on N Broadway. Turner said the three-bedroom home was leased to a Section 8 client — a single mother with three children.

One of the children is deaf and needs services available at the University of Central Oklahoma.

The ministry also has purchased two lots in Edmond where Habitat homes were built last year.

The group has purchased a storage facility to warehouse donated furniture and appliances that will be given to Edmond people in need.