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Habitat for Humanity of Benton County partners with CEI Engineering Associates

Updated: August 17, 2021

Next month CEI, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity, will kick off a nationwide design competition that seeks input and perspectives from CEI staff located across the U.S.

In the region, 150,000 people cannot sustainably afford market-rate housing. One-in-nine households spend more than half their income on housing. Disabled seniors and veterans are hardest hit and comprise more than 45% of cost-burdened households (National Low Income Housing Coalition 2020 Arkansas Housing Profile). Due to the high cost of land and the increased housing demand in the growing job market, developers cannot afford to build lower density units  for those living below median income. Home ownership for the cost-burdened and extremely cost-burdened is entirely out of reach. 

Next month CEI, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity, will kick off the nationwide design competition. The goal: a Benton County community of small, accessible homes for low-income, disabled, seniors and veterans. Affordable, handicap accessible, energy efficient, single family, small homes in a community setting will maximize the impact. Aging in place in a safe and decent environment with common neighbors will reduce the challenges elderly and veteran populations often experience.

CEI – headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas – is a leader in civil engineering, land surveying, and landscape architecture. With offices from coast to coast and a dedicated team of more than 150 professionals, they are committed to addressing affordable housing. 

Habitat for Humanity Benton County – an affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International – has built over 82 homes in the county since 2000. They offer homeownership to poverty families with interest-free mortgages and a support system to help them succeed. Because land is scarce and the need overwhelming, Habitat wants to change the model of larger single-family homes built on individual, lots while preserving the benefits of single-family homeownership. They believe they can maximize the footprint using a new neighborhood small home design as part of a community partnership.

Habitat for Humanity of Benton County is seeking three acres of land in Benton County for this project. The in-kind donation is eligible for a charitable tax deduction and will help create a new affordable housing model that could change the discussion on senior housing.

FROM: Habitat for Humanity Benton County, Inc.

CONTACT: Cindy Acree, (479) 335-5970,