Canton chosen for Georgia’s Initiative for Community Housing

Canton has been chosen as one of five local governments in the state to participate in the Georgia Initiative for Community Housing (GICH).

This three-year program provides collaboration and technical assistance to help communities create and implement a locally-based plan to meet their housing needs.

Along with Canton, Gwinnett County and the cities of Chamblee, Montezuma and Villa Rica were selected for the program.

“Canton has a shortage of attainable/affordable housing; and with the larger GICH family’s assistance and guidance, we’re confident we will tackle many housing and community development issues by working together as a team,” said Canton Councilman Shawn Tolan.

Housing Initiatives Director Ken Patton, who was in charge of providing a thorough application for GICH on the city’s behalf, said he believes the city’s participation in GICH is critical for the city to have a successful strategy for building a housing plan.

Misti Martin, CEO and president, Cherokee Office of Economic Development, added to Patton’s sentiments, “The businesses and industries of Canton, Cherokee and the region will benefit from this initiative. This will position us to help individuals and families live close to where they work and in housing that allows for economic mobility in the community.”

Canton grew by 197% between 2000 and 2010 and increased another 44% in the subsequent decade.

Sabrina Kirkland, Habitat for Humanity, vice president, Development and Strategic Initiatives, said, “The Canton Housing Needs Assessment and Market Study found a short supply of affordable housing for low-income households within the city. Participation in the GICH program will help the city create an action plan to address this known shortfall in a way that is community-driven and grassroots-oriented.”