Some area residents will celebrate the holidays in a new home with the opening of Orange Navy II. Current residents will enjoy a complete Thanksgiving dinner, compliments of the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA) and ITEX Property Management, LLC.

The grand opening and ribbon cutting was held Tuesday. “It’s another great day in Orange,” said Orange Mayor Brown Claybar. “It didn’t seem like to long ago that we were here to dedicate the first set of houses renovated [at Navy Park]. You certainly can see the improvements that we have here.”

“It’s not only an economic development project, but I think we can make a difference in people’s lives by having good, safe neighborhoods and good, safe, affordable housing.”
Phase II of Orange Navy consists of a 25-unit multifamily and 11 single-family units. The reconstruction project was funded with $3,450,000 from the TDHCA Block Grant Hurricane Ike Recovery program.

Michael Lytle representing the TDHCA said, “We’re here to celebrate the grand opening of an affordable rental development and the re-birth of a community that really took it on the chin from two strong hurricanes in a very short time.

“I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to call this afternoon’s grand opening a historic event. The re-development of the historic Navy Park will serve as a spring board for the revitalization of the entire community. This is truly a remarkable initiative, to create affordable housing while in a sense, re-purposing a whole neighborhood.

Lytle also said, “I also think that putting affordable housing in this area is also a wonderful way to honor the legacy of this part of Orange. Navy Park was home to Naval officers, shipyard workers and others who supported this nation’s war efforts back in the 1940s thousands of men and women lived here and worked right in this area sacrificing their lives for a brighter future for all of us.

“In this season when we traditionally give thanks for the many good things in our lives we’re pleased to help you celebrate this wonderful property,” said Lytle.

Ike Akbari with Mayor Brown Claybar presented a turkey to Jozette Rubin, one of the newest residents at Navy Park. She moved in just two weeks ago. Rubin was also presented with a gift card to HEB. “You can buy all the other things goes with the turkey,” said Akbari. “By the way, all these things are purchased from HEB that way the money will be spent locally.” All of the residents will receive a turkey and the gift certificate to make their day a special one of thanks.

Where the offices are located, there is also a community area where parties can be held, an exercise room and a computer room with internet access.

Tiffany Douglas uses the computers to keep up with her Facebook page every day. She has lived at Navy Park for  one and a half years. “I love it she said.”

Linda Cox-Burton, the activity director, plans events and classes for the property including: a kid’s cooking class, food bank, sewing, adult cooking, financial planning, resume writing and other life coaching.

Applications are being taken for the housing, which is available now. The one to four bedroom units range from $526-$695 per month. Rent is based on a percentage of area median limits.

For more information contact the property manager Kathy Jones at (409) 670-0135 or You can also drop by the property office located at 1885 E. Farragut in Orange.

About Penny LeLeux

Penny has worked at The Record Newspapers since 2006. A member of the editorial staff, she has "done everything but print it." Most frequently she writes entertainment reviews and human interest stories, with a little paranormal thrown in from time to time.She has been a lifelong member of the Orangefield community.