First homeless residents move into Cliff Manor

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by CYNTHIA VEGA

WFAA

Posted on August 4, 2010 at 3:42 PM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 4 at 4:17 PM

Cliff Manor Apartments

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DALLAS - In north Oak Cliff, it's move-in day for the first of 17 people who used to call the streets of Dallas their home.

But not all the neighbors at Cliff Manor are ready to offer up a warm welcome.

Neighbors have fought this plan for a number of reasons.

They fear it will bring in more crime and lower property values on Fort Worth Avenue.

But the Dallas Housing Authority is moving forward to move in all 17 people who have been living at the Bridge, the homeless center downtown, to Cliff Manor.

The first to move in to the public housing tower is 53-year-old Kelvin Lock.

He is exuberant; he can't even remember the last time he lived in an apartment.

He said the last four months at the Bridge have turned his life around.

He said he went in for a shower and came out a new man. He said the biggest change for him, keeping him off the streets, is understanding he is bipolar.

He said once he started taking the medication, he began to feel better and has been moving forward ever since.

"I'm starting a new beginning. I go to church. I want to be part of this community. Also, before I come here, I want to let other people know if I can do it, you can do it," Lock said.

Lock has a criminal history, which includes robbery, possession of a firearm, even burglary. He last committed a crime back in 2006.

Lock will get counseling and treatment on a daily basis.

Most neighbors at Cliff Manor are giving him a warm welcome.

As for the Dallas Housing Authority, it said it must move forward with this plan, or it will face a lawsuit for violating fair housing laws.

E-mail: cvega@wfaa.com

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