Bayview Citizens for Social Justice (BCSJ), a community-based organization on Virginia’s Eastern Shore, grew out of the Bayview community’s response to the State of Virginia’s plans to develop a maximum security prison on fields adjacent to Bayview, an historic, rural, African-American community consisting of small shacks with no indoor plumbing or adequate heat or electricity.
Scope of Project
Subsequent to its successful effort to block the prison, BCSJ partnered with Alembic Community Development and the Nature Conservancy to secure $12 million in Federal loans and grants, as well as private and foundation grants, allowing the organization to purchase 160 acres of land to develop a sewer and storm water system and other infrastructure improvements and to build 73 affordable homes in the fields once designated for the prison. Alembic Community Development structured, applied for and secured all project financing, negotiated with the US Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development Loan Program and other lenders and coordinated the successful closing of all construction funds.
Today, Bayview is a community transformed, with affordable homes that have hot and cold running water, central heating and air conditioning, access to a laundry mat and day-care center and a playground.