Final Ocean Breeze West family to receive keys to Boynton Beach home


On Tuesday, a mother and father and their two children will receive the keys to their new Boynton Beach home from Habitat for Humanity of South Palm Beach County.

The Jean-Baptiste family is the 21st and final family to move in to Ocean Breeze West, a low-income housing community in the Heart of Boynton.

“We’re really proud of it,” said Pat Rowan, the development director with Habitat for Humanity. “It turned out beautiful.”

Ocean Breeze West is a new redevelopment project that broke ground in January 2012. Before this, the property was part of Boynton Terrace, a multi-family, Section Eight, 9-acre housing development, and was destroyed by back-to-back hurricanes. Boynton’s Community Redevelopment Agency saw the area as a redevelopment priority.

The CRA platted half of Boynton Terrace — the west side — into the 21 homes, and in April 2011 issued a request for proposal for the area. Habitat for Humanity and the Boynton Beach Faith Based Community Development Corp. were the only ones to respond and the CRA partnered with them to build the community.

Habitat has built 17 of the 21 homes and the remainder was done by the CDC. The homes are between 1,200 and 1,600 square feet with at least three bedrooms, two baths and a garage. The community now is home to 40 adults and 80 children.

Each family goes through a two-year process before they get their home. They need to live or work in the cities Habitat serves, have a stable income, put 500 hours into building their house or a neighbor’s and complete 100 hours in a classroom setting to learn how to be financially stable and take care of their home, Rowan said. Also, they are required to pay back a 30-year no-interest mortgage.

The final home dedication ceremony falls on Giving Tuesday, a day known across the world as a day to give back.

Rowan said the ceremony wasn’t planned to fall on that day, but she’s glad it does.

“It’s a pleasant surprise,” she said.


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