The City of Asheville has been trying to revitalize The Block for well over a decade. The area identified with Eagle and Market Streets downtown was doing just fine until urban renewal had better ideas. Since then, grants and tax incentives have never been enough to complete projects. This round, after the magic money trees in the coffers of local governments coughed up $4.1 million, the state’s geese got busy and laid enough golden eggs for the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency to donate $7 million. (Don’t worry, these eggs are special, so they can’t pay teacher salaries.)

The Agency’s mission is to create affordable housing opportunities for North Carolinians whose needs are not met by the market.