Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson says through creative approaches, rare procedures, "and by the grace of God," Cairo can be saved despite public housing crisis.
Carson made the assertion during a visit Tuesday to the southern Illinois town where two public housing complexes are being torn down, forcing hundreds of residents to find new homes.
Carson said HUD is working hard to keep as many people in Cairo as possible who are being displaced from the two projects.
The Elmwood and McBride public housing projects were constructed in the 1940s and have fallen into extreme disrepair, because of their age and decades of neglect.
About 200 families have been forced to relocate. That's particularly difficult in the town of about 2,600 residents in a rural area and has prompted fears the once-thriving city could be endangered if hundreds of people move elsewhere.