Homeless shelters, street upgrades and housing for special needs residents are among the top priorities identified by the City of Lawton and its housing and community development division after compiling the recent online Community Needs Survey.
The division sought input for the needs survey from Feb. 15 through March 15 to gauge areas of needs and interest among residents, and received 237 responses. Those who took the survey answered questions that pertained to demographics, community development needs, infrastructure and neighborhood improvements, public services, housing, quality of life, civic engagement and city government.
The top priorities:
• Community Development: Homeless facilities (65.8%)
• Infrastructure and Neighborhood Improvements: Streets improvements (90.7%)
• Public Service: Neighborhood cleanup/blight removal (48.5%); youth services (47.7%)
• Housing: Housing for special needs citizens (61.3%); energy efficiency and sustainability improvements (60.9%); permanent housing for homeless (60.9%)
City officials say the survey results give insight to the desires of the community and also will be a valuable resource during grant application processes, for funding through sources such as the Community Development Block Grant and HOME programs.
The mission of housing and community development division is to improve the quality of life for the community by providing assistance to public service organizations; developing low-income neighborhood parks, streets, and utilities; and advocating for development of affordable, safe and decent housing, through rehabilitation, emergency repairs and homeownership opportunities to low- and moderate-income residents.
Full survey results may be seen at the City of Lawton website, lawtonok.gov/publications/community-needs-survey-results-2021. Information is available by calling the division at 581-3347 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.