The Utica Municipal Housing Authority (UMHA) submitted a successful grant proposal to HUD in 2003 and was awarded $11.5 million dollars, with an intent to leverage tens of millions of dollars more for city transformation. The project intent was to:
On a national level, the HOPE VI program has demonstrated success in improving public housing and in de-concentrating poverty, and HOPE VI is not the sole factor leading to neighborhood change. Neighborhoods are complex entities that are affected by many factors, including the strength of the economy, government action, community group involvement, and the availability of investment and credit.
The HOPE VI project in Utica, New York is a tale of two projects. The displacement and relocation of Washington Courts residents, few of whom could ever think of buying a home due to low incomes and poor credit, had little relationship to the second project which was housing and home ownership development, including community revitalization in Cornhill.