Mark Peterson, Bridgeway’s President and CEO identified the award criteria as a community development partner making a difference. An organization or person making critical contributions in the Western Pennsylvania region where everyone participates in economics. Onwugbenu, Peterson said is Bridgeway’s first individual Impact awardee.
Onwugbenu and E Properties and Development transformed an abandoned school in the Larimer community into the new home for the Urban Academy Charter School. The reconstruction and development provides for growth, and offers a high-quality education to 250 children. Along with E Properties and Bridgeway, other partners in the project included the Reinvestment fund, Architect Radelet McCarthy Polletta, Pittsburgh City Councilman Ricky Burges and the Larimar Consensus Group.
According to the Urban Academy of Greater Pittsburgh Charter School CEO Dr. Gail D. Edwards, the mission of the school is to provide superior education that will develop into the students’ academic excellence, leadership skills and social values enabling them to ultimately become positive contributors to the community in which they live, and society. Sitting abandoned and boarded up for numerous years, the approximate budget for the 38,000 square-foot building was $3 Million.
About E Properties and Development
E Properties and Development is a multi-faceted company that acquires, develops, and sells residential and commercial properties with a unique and innovative approach. Its focus lies in the development and redevelopment of under-performing properties with the utmost respect for the neighborhoods and community members where developments take place. For more information visit: wwwepropertiesdev.com
About Bridgeway Capital
Bridgeway Capital is a nonprofit, community development financial institution (CDFI) providing loans to enterprises in western Pennsylvania. The organization drives regional economic development by helping startup entrepreneurs, small businesses and nonprofit organizations where they need it most — with available capital. In addition, Bridgeway Capital supports community development projects that improve the quality of life for surrounding populations. The resulting properties become magnets for additional investments and create a range of economic opportunities. For more information, visit: www.bridgewaycapital.org.