Archive / Project Row Houses

Nr. 018 / 1994 - ongoing / United States

Project Row Houses

An art organisation providing affordable housing to low-income residents to foster community building, social safety nets, to avoid displacement and stop gentrification


Rick Lowe, James Bettison, Bert Long, Jesse Lott, Floyd Newsum, Bert Samples, George Smith


Artists and community activists transform the social environment in one of Houston's oldest African American neighborhood - which lacks of affordable housing - providing to low-income residents refurbished houses. Taking into account the historical and the architectural richness of the neighbourhood, the project includes 6 blocks of housing, 49 properties,12 artist exhibitions and residency spaces, 7 houses for young mothers, office spaces, a community gallery, a park, and commercial spaces. In 2003, after noticing the rise of property prices in the area, Project Row Houses (PRH) founded a separate Community Development Corporation (CDC) to preserve community and equal opportunity for low to moderate income residents to live in Third Ward.


United States


The project increases affordable housing opportunities for low income residents by expanding affordable rental conditions. It revitalizes the neighborhood developing a design that considers the existing architecture in the community. It raises social responsibility in Houston’s Third Ward through art in daily life, quality education with multigenerational exchange and architectural preservation. Finally, the project is a catalyst for economic development by fostering cooperation between residents to reshape the community identity.

Beneficial outcomes

The project provides affordable housing for people in the community. Through the Young Mothers Program provides up to two years of subsidized housing, counseling on parenting skills to mothers in need. PRH offers free tutoring to students who need assistance in their studies as well as a learning service project to provide hands-on experiences beyond the classroom. It hosts a community market to sustain local creatives and an incubator program that provide space, time and mentorship to early career artists and individuals.

Maintained by

Project Rowe Houses Community Development Corporation, The Brown Foundation, Bruner Foundation Inc., Chevron, Houston Endowment Inc., Joan Hohlt & Roger Wich Foundation, The Kinder Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, The Lewis Family Foundation, Marc Melcher, John P. McGovern Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Nightingale Code Foundation, Betty Pecore and Howard Hilliard, Picnic, Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, The Simmons Foundation Inc., Surdna Foundation, Texas Commission on the Arts, Susan Vaughan Foundation, City of Houston, Houston Arts Alliance


People in Houston’s Third Ward District, young mothers, children, youth, artists, activists, architects, designers, visitors, art lovers, tourists.