Students often rush back and forth past Norris Homes on Berks Street on their way to and from the Temple University Regional Rail station. But not many take notice of the public housing development on 11th Street between Berks and Diamond, or acknowledge the residents who live there.
The Philadelphia Housing Authority issued a notice to Norris Homes residents on Oct. 2 that they had 90 days before mandatory relocations begin, as PHA makes room for what will become a new mixed-income housing development.
In this week’s issue of The Temple News, an enterprise details the history of the housing development and its residents. Many residents told us they are saddened by having to move and shared some of the memories they’re leaving behind.
The university has co-existed with Norris Homes for nearly 60 years, and while students have come and gone from Temple, many residents have lived at Norris Homes for decades.
The Temple News constantly reports on the changes affecting the community surrounding Main Campus, and continually encourages students to respect residents and form relationships with them.
Through this project, we spoke to loving parents and friendly neighbors. We heard about birthday parties and family celebrations. We heard about the lives of people who live near campus, simply because we decided to ask. And we are grateful that we did.
Next time you walk past a resident on their stoop, stop to say hello and ask how they’re doing. And when you’re returning to campus from the Regional Rail, smile at the people as you pass by.
After all, these are our neighbors, too.