7 months ago in the bitter cold project realtor Sandra Nickel warmed up to the idea of what Lanier Place could become, the very spark to change the face of West Fairview Avenue that's been in decline for years.
55 cottage style homes with three bedrooms and two baths.
"This is only the second time in 30 years a subdivision has been developed west of Court Street," said Nickel in January.
Today three new homes are beginning to make up Lanier Place, a little more than a $100,000 a piece.
Still, there is something missing.
Potential homebuyers haven't exactly blown the roof off the Lanier Place project, but city leaders feel that day is coming despite what we're seeing in Washington, D.C.
The government is under tremendous pressure to cut spending and reduce the deficit. All this relates to Lanier Place because it was federal money used to get Lanier Place off the ground, federal funds that could in theory be reduced if there are major spending cuts in Congress.
"It's a small concern. Right now though we have the money and that money is in the bank," said Robert Smith, Director of Planning for the city of Montgomery.
So why hasn't anyone moved in?
Sandra Nickel admitted she's a little surprised herself.
"Because the homes are just gorgeous," said Smith.
The primary challenge is the income restriction. A single person can't make more than $33,150 a year and must have decent credit. 5 prospects have been turned down but since February Nickel and Smith say they've gotten 200 inquiries.
"This is just one piece of the overall project to transform this area. It takes time when you're dealing with federal money," said Smith.
Three vacant, new homes but that could change this week. The picture is becoming clearer, according to Nickel.