Lottery system for Project HOME's newest residences means no days-long queue

Applications are being accepted until Sept. 15.

Pat Loeb
August 22, 2018 - 7:13 am
Gloria Casarez Residence, 8th and Thompson streets, Philadelphia

Project HOME

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Project HOME is using a new lottery system to lease its new 30-unit subsidized housing development, set to open this winter.

The line that formed last summer, a day before Project HOME started accepting applications for its last development, was a stark illustration of the need for affordable housing in Philadelphia. 

"I haven't been to sleep, I'm tired, my body is aching. I just hope that it pays off for me," said one applicant last year.

That won't happen this summer. Young adult program manager Kate Gormley says the applications, for the new residence at 8th and Thompson streets, are being accepted only by mail and for the first time will be selected by lottery. 

"At our last lease-up, we had folks lining up three days ahead of when we were going to take the applications, so this is very much an intentional move to avoid having people waiting out on the sidewalk," Gormley said. "This is apparently pretty standard operating in the housing world, so we've worked with housing consultants."

She says the new building — named for the late activist Gloria Casarez, the city's first director of LGBT affairs — is targeted to young adults under age 23, and is LGBTQ-friendly. 

"They're often described as an invisible population because of the couch-surfing and frequent shuffling," Gormley said.

Residents will receive employment, education, and healthcare-related services in addition to subsidized one-bedroom units.

Project HOME is accepting applications until Sept. 15. Applications can be downloaded from the Project HOME website, and there are assistance sessions to help fill it out. The lottery is scheduled for Oct. 1.