|HUD No. 20-085
HUD Public Affairs
June 19, 2019
HUD Secretary Ben Carson Commemorates Juneteenth in Tampa
Visits Opportunity Zone and Future Site of African American History Museum
TAMPA, FL - U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson today commemorated Juneteenth by touring the ongoing community revitalization efforts in Tampa, Florida, where he visited the ENCORE! redevelopment area, including the future site of Tampa’s African American History Museum.
“Juneteenth marks a celebrated date of progress in our Nation’s history,” said Secretary Ben Carson. “Today, it is a privilege to visit the future site of Tampa’s African American History Museum – a tribute to this progress in a formerly segregated neighborhood. Through Opportunity Zone fund investments and partnerships, I am pleased to see this area thriving once again, without losing sight of its rich African American history and roots.”
The ENCORE! redevelopment effort is revitalizing a once thriving neighborhood with rich African American history but faded in 1964 after residents began to shop and frequent desegregated areas. Following race riots of the 1960s, the business district was demolished. In 2007, the Tampa Housing Authority deconstructed Central Park Village with the goal of “restoring the rhythm of the once vibrant district.” ENCORE! construction began in 2009, and today, it is a 12 city block downtown neighborhood with 662 completed mixed-income housing units with ground floor retail and amenity space, a state of the art district chilled water plant, district storm water vault, solar arrays, parks, and includes the future site of Tampa’s African American History Museum.
In 2018, the ENCORE! neighborhood was designated an Opportunity Zone by former Florida Governor Rick Scott. Created by President Trump, Opportunity Zones encourage private-sector investment in forgotten communities. Secretary Carson is the Chairperson of the White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council, which was established by the President in 2018. Nearly 35 million Americans live in the more than 8,700 Opportunity Zones across the country.