Cherokee Nation’s Construction of $4 Million Housing Project Begins in Tahlequah

KTUL - December 5, 2022 6:42 am

The Cherokee Nation broke ground to begin construction on $4 million new duplexes for low-income Cherokee families on Friday.

These buildings will replace the ones originally built in 1969.

Leaders gathered at the new Birdtail Addition on Ross Street in Tahlequah to celebrate.

Sixteen rental units will be included at the location once they are finished in 2023.

“We know that our Cherokee families thrive when their surroundings are safer and more efficient and don’t have to worry about higher utility costs or things not working as well as they should,” Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. said. “Deputy Chief Warner and I, have worked with the Council of the Cherokee Nation to ensure housing is a priority and invested $120 million as part of our Housing, Jobs and Sustainable Communities Act to build new homes, replace aging homes, create more home ownership and upgrade our rental housing across the reservation. It’s great today to see more of our continual progress.”

Chief Hoskin speaks as new construction begins on a $4 million housing project in Tahlequah on December 2, 2022. (Courtesy Cherokee Nation)

Birdtail Addition is one of the rental properties of the Housing Authority of the Cherokee Nation.

Properties were originally built in August of 1969 under the 1937 Housing Act.

“New and affordable housing is such a huge need within the Cherokee Nation and we quickly realized these particular rentals were aging and needed to be demolished last year and rebuilt, so it’s exciting to be making these changes which are significant to so many families,” Deputy Chief Bryan Warner said.

The new 16 duplexes that will be built across from the Cherokee Nation’s Outpatient Health Center will include two 4-bedroom individual units, eight 3-bedroom duplexes, and six 2-bedroom duplexes.

TriArch is the architect and Arrowhead is the contractor of the project.

Interim Executive Director of the Housing Authority of the Cherokee Nation Jerri Killer said preference for the new units will be given to the families living in the former site who were temporarily located along with Cherokee elders.

“This is just the first groundbreaking of many in a long line of projects for new home construction, rental units, and housing replacements,” Killer said. “It’s really a historic time for housing in the Cherokee Nation.”

As part of Chief Hoskin and Deputy Warner’s Housing Jobs, and Sustainable Communities Act of 2019, more housing projects are planned or ongoing.

Future projects include six one-bedroom elder housing units in Stilwell, single-family housing units in Locust Grove, eight duplexes in Sallisaw, and four one-bedroom elder units in Marble City, in addition to new home construction for citizens with and without land throughout the Cherokee Nation Reservation.

 

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