The Replacement Park
This element of the comparability equation is harder
to quantify. It is addressed to some degree by the URA.
(See Title 49 Part 24—Uniform Relocation Assistance
and Real Property Acquisition for Federal and Federally-Assisted Program; § 24. 2 Definitions and acronyms,
which states, “ 6) Comparable replacement dwelling. The
term comparable replacement dwelling means a dwelling
which is…(v) In a location generally not less desirable
than the location of the displaced person’s dwelling with
respect to public utilities and commercial and public
facilities, and reasonably accessible to the person’s place of
employment....” Therefore, any comparable chosen must
meet these and other minimums discussed in that section.
But the relocation professional should also be ready
to answer such questions as: What amenities does
the replacement park have? (Some mobile home park
communities now have on-site swimming pools,
clubhouses and gyms for resident use.) What are the
credit requirements for entry into the new park? Are there
limitations on the number and types of pets residents can
have? What are the site maintenance requirements at the
new park (i.e., lawn care, etc.)? Are their age restrictions for
residents? What is the monthly site rental fee and security
deposit? How large are the sites themselves and how close
are neighboring units?
The relocation of residents of a mobile home park is a very
complex, time consuming and expensive undertaking.
A thorough understanding of all state and federal
requirements is necessary before even beginning to start
relocation planning. Availability of comparable housing
must also be addressed along with the issue of proper
funding. Understanding the qualifications for federal,
state and local housing and social programs will also help
displacees. It is also crucial that the relocation professional
is brought into the project development process early
enough to examine these issues and work with other right
of way, appraisal and engineering professionals to formulate
strategies that adequately address these challenges.
Darryl Root, R/W-RAC, JD
Darryl is Vice President of Marketing and
Business Development for Paragon Partners
Ltd. He has more than 20 years of professional
real estate experience in both the public and
private sectors involving real estate sales and
acquisition of right of way, easements and fee
property, as well as residential and commercial
relocation assistance. Darryl has a law degree
from Washington University School of Law and
an MBA from Maryville University in St. Louis.