CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Catherine Garvin sat Wednesday on the porch of the same house she has lived in since she moved to Charlotte in the early 1940's on Heflin street.
Garvin said all her children have since moved away but always come back to visit her and the old Grier Heights neighborhood. She said she is excited about the groundbreaking down the road.
"I wanted to be in Charlotte, and I moved right here to Grier Heights," Garvin said as she sat outside the brick duplex. "I raised five children here.
"[My daughters] ask me, ‘Mom are you going to move over there.?’ I tell them I don't know I'm thinking about it," Garvin said.
Two faith-based non-profit groups, CrossRoads and Self Help Community, partnered with the city of Charlotte to build the Elizabeth subdivision in Grier Heights. The groups worked to get funding to buy a six-acre track of land on Heflin Street where some of the area's worst houses once stood.
Now those houses will be replaced by 35 new houses for families with mixed incomes. The groundbreaking on Wednesday was for the first phase.
"It was a blighted area, and it was housing a lot of crime and we came and figured we needed to knock that down," said Pastor Larry James. "If we have a mixed community, it leads it into a place where we have longevity and people would love to come and be a part of and make it home."
The goal for CrossRoads is to help increase the number of homeowners in the neighborhood by 25 percent. Currently more than 80 percent of people who live in the neighborhood rent.