Celebration to commemorate Lincoln Street rebirth set for Saturday

Published 4:21 pm Thursday, April 27, 2023

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The restoration of Lincoln Street is complete—well, phase one—and it is time to celebrate.

Habitat for Humanity of Madison and Clark Counties is handing over the keys to the sixth home it has built on the block and has invited the community to the event, which starts at 11 a.m. on Saturday.

The famed humanitarian organization broke ground on the first home in late 2021 and less than two years later, has helped turn the street into a thriving little community.

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“This is a wrap-up celebration,” said Habitat’s Amanda Dube. “We will have a cookout and will hear from some of the homeowners who have been in their homes awhile so they can let folks know the difference it has made in their lives.”

Newer residents of Winchester would not have recognized Lincoln Street in the past.

“At least a decade ago, Lincoln Street was identified as an area in need of renewal,” Dube said. “The homes were in disrepair and it was not a place that you would want to raise a family.”

In the spirit of municipal improvement, the city of Winchester applied for and received a $1 million Community Development Block Grant in 2017 to rehabilitate the street.

As part of the partnership with Habitat, the city gifted six lots for future homes to be built on.

Before construction began, the city had to legally condemn dilapidated properties on Lincoln Street and then rehome several residents.

The city then cleared the land, widened the road, put in sidewalks and laid different utilities.

“They made it a lovely street,” Dube said.

Habitat has been thrilled to work with the city on the project.

“We are grateful to the city of Winchester for having a vision of what Lincoln Street could be and inviting Habitat for Humanity of Madison and Clark Counties to join forces with them to make that vision a reality,” Dube said. “Because of this partnership, the lives of six families will be changed forever.

And the partnership between the city and Habitat is not done. There is more work to come on Lincoln Street.

“The city’s plan is to once again to apply for community block grant funding … We will partner with them to build four additional homes on the other side of the street.”

Welcome home

The sixth homeowner on Lincoln Street is Miranda Short and Dube had high praise for her.

“If ever there were someone that has overcome obstacles, it is Miranda,”  she said in a previous interview with the Sun. “She is someone when things did not always go the way she had written them out for the future. She overcame those things, worked hard and found the help that she needed.”

Short, a Winchester native, bounced between Louisville and Indiana after she graduated from high school. Eventually, she settled back in the area while pregnant with her son, Drake.

Needing assistance with necessities like a place to live, Short contacted Clark Community Services and started down a road where she would open her own business specializing in commercial and residential cleaning.

Short applied for a Habitat home and was approved for the program in January. Since then she has put in over 200 hours of “sweat equity” at other Habitat build sites and taken financial literacy courses as part of the program.

Making Short’s new home all the more special is that it is known as the “hometown build”.

Several different entities, such the city of Winchester, Clark Regional Medical Center, Central and Community Trust banks, First Christian and Salem Presbyterian churches and many more, joined together to sponsor the Short’s home.