ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – City leaders are working on a plan to revitalize some Abilene neighborhoods with a new economic development program called ‘Rebuild ABI.’

The aim of the program is to encourage the development and improvement of affordable single-family housing within certain areas designated by the city. The program will include two phases – constructing new homes on empty lots and renovating unoccupied homes in those communities.

Owner of Homes by Design, Jon Loudermilk, told KTAB/KRBC he’s proud to be a homebuilder for the program.

“Builders like us can come in, and we can take those lots and construct a new construction home that is affordable,” explained Loudermilk.

Director of Abilene’s Planning and Development Services, Tim Littlejohn, shared that the redevelopment of the city’s historic neighborhoods is the primary focus of Rebuild ABI.

“As you can see, all the development going to the far north and far south, it kind of kills the interior of a city, so what we’re trying to do is prevent that and encourage infield development closer to downtown to some of these older, established neighborhoods,” said Littlejohn.

The program is also aimed to ensure that the sale price of a new home does not exceed $203,000. Some of the minimum requirements for these new homes include:

  • At least three bedrooms and one bathroom
  • At least one car garage and concrete driveway
  • A four-foot wood or chain link privacy fence
  • The home must be at least 1,000 square feet

$1,000,000 has been allocated in the budget for the program. It was approved by the city council on Thursday, October 12. Builders can commence construction and renovation within weeks.