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Habitat For Humanity Launches National Building Blitz in Jacksonville

Habitat for Humanity kicked off its nationwide, week-long building blitz in Jacksonville’s New Town community on Monday morning.  Why Jacksonville? Spokesperson and former This Old House host Steve Thomas says no other Habitat for Humanity chapter is as successful or as prolific as HabiJax.

“Jacksonville has been a huge and well organized and big contributor to builders blitz and habitat over the years," Thomas said. "That’s why we’re launching it here. Because Jacksonville is a heavy hitter when it comes to building blitz: 25 new homes, 25 rehabs.”

More than 30-private home builders and subcontractors will spend the week working alongside 1,500 volunteers putting up drywall, putting in central air and heat, installing new appliances, carpeting and landscaping. Seventy-year-old Bessie Walker will stay with family for the next couple of days while her house on Powhattan Street is renovated inside and out.

“My house is the biggest house and the oldest house," Walker said. "My house is 98-years-old and a lot of the original wood is still there.”

Jacksonville's blitz build is a collaboration of HabiJax, the Northeast Florida Builders Association and its non-profit charity, Builders Care.

Habitat for Humanity hopes to construct, renovate and repair 250 homes in 35 states during its 2014 Home Builders Blitz.  

You can follow Cyd Hoskinson on Twitter @cydwjctnews.