Westside evolves: Chattanooga's oldest and largest public housing complex to get makeover

Staff photo by Erin O. Smith / Built in 1940, College Hill Courts is Chattanooga's oldest and biggest public housing project and is at the center of 120-acre area on the Westside being studied for redevelopment.

Chattanooga's oldest and biggest public housing complex will get a new look as the Chattanooga Housing Authority seeks ways to maintain and grow both affordable and mixed-used housing and commercial development on the Westside of Chattanooga's downtown.

The authority is launching the next phase in its nine-month study with a series of public meetings to re-imagine the 120 acres that are home to more than 2,000 residents who live in subsidized housing at College Hill Courts and the neighboring Boynton Terrace Apartments, Gateway Towers, Dogwood Manor, Ridgeway, Golden Gateway, Boynton Overlook and Riverview Apartments.

"This is an area that has a lot of challenges, but at the same time it has a lot of strengths," said Rhae Parkes of EJP Consulting Group, the Florida consulting firm that is working with the city, residents and other stakeholders to develop the "Westside Evolves" plan for the future.