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Housing Officials Hope Grant Can Revamp Dorchester Neighborhood

Federal housing officials plan to set aside more than $20 million to transform the distressed Quincy Street neighborhood in Dorchester.

It's an economic shot in the arm and a chance at a different future for the troubled area.

For 84-year-old Mary Elizabeth Knight, Thursday was the payoff for years of work trying to improve her community. She has lived in the neighborhood for nearly 60 years.

"At least we're seeing something now," Knight said, "because before we met and we talked and we talked but we didn't see anything."

Mary Knight's daughter, Patricia Knight, said her mother never gave up hope, despite the challenges the neighborhood faced.

"From the time I was a child, after the riots, I can remember my mother saying 'You wait and see. One day this neighborhood is going to be thriving and vital, with beautiful green spaces that other neighborhoods have," Patricia said. "(Now) she's finally seeing it."

Boston is one of five cities chosen to receive the so-called Choice Neighborhoods grants, which are designed to change distressed neighborhoods into healthy communities.

This program aired on September 1, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.

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