top of page


In November of 2021, Brownsville was one of 8 communities nationwide awarded a Planning Grant for the International / Southmost Neighborhood. This grant is awarded by  the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) as part of the Choice Neighborhood Initiative (CNI).


Through the Grant, The City of Brownsville (COB), in partnership with the Housing Authority of the City of Brownsville (HACB), will work with local residents and a variety of community stakeholders to create a forward-looking CNI Plan focused on People, Housing and Community. 

Screen Shot 2022-01-13 at 6.51.33 PM.png



The International / Southmost neighborhood was selected for its tremendous opportunities and strategic location less than a mile from downtown Brownsville, and the International Border Crossing, and close to major anchor institutions including UTRGV and Texas Southmost College. This neighborhood area is also home of a wide array of assets to build upon including Porter Early College High School, Canales Elementary, Faulk Middle School, Lincoln Park School, Tony Gonzalez Park, and many popular restaurants and faith-based organizations. 

There are two target housing sites for this Transformation Plan: the 46-unit Victoria Gardens development (built in 1944) located at the intersection of International Boulevard and the I69 highway, and Citrus Gardens Annex located just to the East.



What is the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative?


The HUD Choice Neighborhoods Initiative (CNI) employs a comprehensive approach to neighborhood transformation. The program helps communities by revitalizing distressed public (and/or assisted) housing while investing and leveraging investments in:

  • Well-functioning services and public assets

  • High quality public schools/education programs

  • High quality early learning programs/services

  • Public transportation and mobility

  • Improved access to jobs

The CNI will ensure that current residents will be able to benefit from this transformation by preserving affordable housing or providing residents with the choice to move in to affordable and accessible housing in another existing neighborhood of opportunity.

The Choice Neighborhoods Initiative is focused on three core goals:

  1. Housing: Transform distressed public and assisted housing into energy efficient, mixed-income housing that is physically and financially viable over the long term.

  2. People: Support positive outcomes for families who live in the target developments and the surrounding neighborhood, particularly outcomes related to residents’ education, health and recreation, safety, employment, and mobility; and

  3. Neighborhood: Transform distressed neighborhoods into viable, mixed-income neighborhoods with access to well-functioning services, high quality public schools and education programs, high quality early learning programs and services, public assets, public transportation, and improved access to jobs.


This planning process is anticipated to be developed throughout two years (December 2021-2023). The phases of the plan include: Listening and Learning, Visioning for the Future, Developing Strategies, Programs and Projects, Documenting the Elements of the Plan: People, Housing and Neighborhood, Integrating a Draft Plan and Final Plan. 



The planning process will be led by the City of Brownsville in collaboration with HACB. The creation of the Plan will be overseen by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and coordinated by BORDERLESS and COLLABO. The Choice planning team commits to working directly with residents, non-profit organizations, and local businesses to create a Plan that reflects the vision and aspirations of the entire community.

Steering Committee-blue.jpg



For questions about this plan, please contact:


Olga Moya, Grant Manager

City of Brownsville

(956) 551-6035

Ana Trejo, Director of Support Services

Housing Authority of the City of Brownsville

(956) 214-1527

bottom of page