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DC Students Construction Trades Foundation Breaks Ground on Future Student-Built Home

Tuesday, October 26, 2010
DHCD provided site for the property, which will be built by Cardozo students

(Washington, DC) – The DC Department of Housing and Community Development joined Ward 4 Councilwoman Muriel Bowser; Ward 5 Councilman Harry Thomas, Jr.; Councilman At-Large Kwame Brown; Councilman At-Large Michael A.  Brown; Councilman At-Large David Catania; Cardozo Senior High School Principal Dr. Gwendolyn Grant; and Cardozo students for the DC Students Construction Trades Foundation (the Foundation) groundbreaking ceremony. 

At the event, the Academy of Construction and Design at Cardozo marked the beginning of its first student-built home at a previously vacant lot, located at 5734 13th Street NW, donated by DHCD.  The Academy provides technical education in vocational trades including carpentry, electrical and heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration. 

Students in the Academy will build a 2,000 square foot home on the donated site.  The property will be sold at market rate at an anticipated value of approximately $400,000.  Proceeds from the sale of the program will be reinvested into the Foundation and into the next student construction site. 

“This worthwhile project will have several positive impacts:  putting a property back into property back to use, eliminating slum and blight, and giving young people an opportunity to gain skills that will help lead to fruitful careers,” said DHCD Director Leila Finucane Edmonds. 

Said DHCD Property Acquisition and Disposition Division Manager Martine Combal, “This is an excellent example of how the Department is using innovative methods to address vacant properties in the District and put them back to productive use and back on the City’s tax rolls.”

The home has been designed to meet high green building standards and will be an exhibit in creating a vibrant, sustainable structure for learning.