Wednesday, July 11, 2001, Vol. 115, No. 131

Lisa Marie officially opens Presley Place Lisa Marie officially opens Presley Place The Elvis Presley Charitable Foundation, an arm of Elvis Presley Enterprises, and the Metropolitan Inter-Faith Association opened Presley Place, a 12-unit transitional housing facility funded by the EPCF in Memphis Tuesday. Lisa Marie Presley, EPE chairman, was present to cut the ceremonial ribbon and to greet the new residents. In June 1999, the EPCF announced its commitment to fund the creation of Presley Place, a $1 million plus development managed by MIFA as part of Estival Communities, MIFA's housing program for homeless families. The grand-opening ceremony provided the public an opportunity to view the facility and learn more about this program to assist families in crisis. ``All of us with the EPCF and Elvis Presley Enterprises are extremely proud of this amazing facility,'' Presley said. ``The work that MIFA does truly has an impact on peoples' lives and we look forward to this collaboration.'' The 12-unit apartment complex, designed by Looney Ricks Kiss Architects and built by Patton and Taylor Enterprises, will contain both four- and two-bedroom apartments as transitional housing for homeless families. The four-bedroom units, the first of their size in Estival Communities, will allow MIFA to serve the needs of larger families. The two-story brick apartments have an open floor plan downstairs with living room, dining room and kitchen. The complex's design, with the apartments facing into a courtyard and each unit having a porch, promotes a sense of community among residents. ``The development of Presley Place is exciting on so many levels,'' said Meghan Altimore, MIFA director of housing. ``Transitional housing for families, especially for large families, has been determined to be a high priority need in our city according to an annual report on homeless needs.'' The property is located at 709 St. Paul Ave. in the Peabody/Vance neighborhood. Presley Place and its residents will be managed by MIFA. Like the families living in Estival Communities, Presley Place residents will be provided a variety of services. Residents receive up to one year of rent-free housing, child care at the Les Passees Center, employment counseling, life-skills education and case management to identify the steps that brought them to homelessness and to gain the skills to prevent it from reoccurring. ``Presley Place is going to provide families throughout the Peabody/Vance Neighborhood an opportunity to grow work toward achieving positive goals,'' said Margaret Craddock, MIFA executive director. ``These families are trying to overcome powerful barriers: poverty, homelessness, education opportunities and discrimination. We need to nurture them and provide them with all we can, especially throughout the early stages of their lives. If we do that, we're changing the lives of people who otherwise aren't offered some of life's most important opportunities.''