Habitat for Humanity of Martin County’s history in Hobe Sound is long and built on a solid base. Since 1999, Habitat has built 27 homes in Hobe Sound, all located in the Banner Lake neighborhood. In the past two decades, Habitat for Humanity of Martin County has partnered with banks on the donation of properties, worked with Martin County to acquire properties and increase infrastructure and performed more than 50 A Brush With Kindness projects in the area.
But the vision was to always expand that footprint.
Thanks to a grant in 2016 from the Hobe Sound Community Chest Habitat was able to buy approximately two acres just east of US1, between Pettway and Washington St. That funding, coupled with partnerships from the Saks Kavanaugh Foundation and the Martin County Community Development Department, has produced what will be a brand new, 18-home neighborhood.
During the last four years, Habitat for Humanity of Martin County has worked with Community Development Department, Growth Management, the Community Redevelopment Agency and South Martin Regional Utilities to plan a neighborhood which will fit in with the existing homes and complement the area and neighborhood surrounding the land. To that end, Martin County has already extended water lines across Pettway to service the future homes and the homes that are currently serviced (usually poorly) by wells.
In July, Martin County cleared the property to prepare it to go to bid for infrastructure (sewers, water, electric, roads, sidewalks, etc.) before Habitat comes in to build 18 homes. The Board of County Commissioners approved $1.6 million for the county to hire a contractor to perform the work.
When the infrastructure is complete, probably mid-2021, Habitat for Humanity of Martin County plans to go in and build the 18 homes over the course of three years, six at a time. In the meantime, Habitat will focus its A Brush With Kindness program on Hobe Sound, partnering with existing homeowners to make their homes more efficient, safer and healthier.
The Pettway community understands the importance of home ownership vs rentals and is thrilled to be able to have 18 steady homeowners coming into the area.
When the neighborhood is complete, the entire community will be transformed. Existing homeowners will have water and sewer hookups and brand new sidewalks on which to walk.
Local foundations and individual residents have already pledged their support to the construction of the homes. After the success of Carter Park, Habitat for Humanity of Martin County is expecting this to be one of its most visible and highly showcased neighborhoods.