Partnership Development Foundation
The Foundation’s first purchase, in 2005, was the 60,000 square foot Oxford Building, adjacent to the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame. Having been offered for sale – and only partially occupied – for several years, the building wassold in November of 2005 to a developer who reconfigured the space to include 24 luxury apartments, ground-level indoor parking, and street-level retail space.
In June of 2006 a unique opportunity presented itself to the Partnership and to other civic-minded organizations and individuals as the Portsmouth Redevelopment and Housing Authority assembled 10 adjacent land parcels for a 10-home Habitat for Humanity Blitz Build in the Brighton neighborhood. The Partnershiptook a portion of its Oxford Building sale proceeds to team with then-Partnership President Ken Jolley’s Associated Contracting Services to build one of the homes, while Partnership member John Wright’s Waverton Associates covered the entire cost of another home. Partnership board member Jerrold Miller’s Earl Industries and John Hall’s John E. Hall Electric made significant contributions to the effort, while several individual Partnership board members pitched in, as well. It was fitting that the buyer for the Partnership-ACS home was a young mother who later enrolled in the Partnership’s Lefcoe Leadership class, determined to take her personal civic commitment to a higher level.
The PDF’s next purchase was a 5-acre parcel in Churchland which straddled the Portsmouth-Chesapeake boundary line. While dual 20-foot set-back requirements rendered the property practically unusable, conversations with the two cities’ authorities resulted in a waiver of the set-backs, allowing the formation a visible, accessible parcel in a high-traffic corridor. A 2.5 acre portion was sold to Royal Farms, who opened its new location in the winter of 2011. The remaining 2.5 acres represents a further opportunity for the PDF.