PHA opens Marshall Shepard Village in West Philadelphia
    PHILADELPHIA - Anyone visiting the formerly crime-ridden neighborhood near 41st and Wallace Streets in West Philadelphia might not believe their eyes. The Philadelphia Housing Authority has turned the community into a safe and sparkling place. 

    Employees of PHA joined with new residents to celebrate the grand opening of Marshall Shepard Village, PHA's latest development in that section of the city. 

    "This new site represents a safe link between the other housing we have already built at Lucien E. Blackwell Homes and the Lancaster Avenue business district," said PHA Executive Director Carl Greene. 

    PHA has invested upwards of $200 million over the past several years building hundreds of homes in the neighborhood. Most are rentals for low-income families, but the development includes 140 homes for sale to families of moderate incomes. 

    Marshall Shepard includes 80 rental homes, 20 of which are completely handicap accessible. This represents PHA's ongoing commitment to the low-income disabled community. 

    "The federal government requires PHA to provide at least 5% of its housing units as certifiably accessible. At this site the figure is 25%, and when you examine all of our properties combined we are close to 8%. We are very proud of our emphasis on serving the disabled community," Greene said. 

    Like all newly built PHA homes, these have central air, carpeting and modern kitchens. The community includes a mix of 1, 2, and 3 bedroom units in townhouse style buildings. 

    The site is named after Reverend Marshall Shepard, pastor of Mount Olivet church and a believer in community service, who went on to serve on City Council in the 1960's. 

    PHA has more plans for the neighborhood, including a large community center at 47th and Aspen Streets. This will be a joint project with the School District

PHA Executive Director Carl Greene (center) was joined by other community leaders for the ribbon cutting ceremony at Marshall Shepard Village.

Gloria Guard, president of the People's Emergency Center, is thrilled to have the new development in the same neighborhood as the Center.

One of the handicap accessible units at Marshall Shepard Village. 20 of the 80 homes at the development are handicap accessible, representing PHA's ongoing commitment to the low-income disabled community.

A colorful, three-story, low-rise unit on Haverford Avenue is the face of Marshall Shepard Village.

These rental homes on June Street, near Blackwell Homes, are also part of  the Marshall Shepard Village development. PHA's reinvestment in West Philadelphia is helping to improve the quality of life there and lower crime rates.