20-unit elderly housing project vying for HUD funds


New England-wide competition


October 27, 2011
LANCASTER — An application for federal funding to construct a 20-unit housing project for low-income citizens aged 62 and older at 2 Bridge St. (Route 2) in the vacant six-acre lot in front of the Lancaster School was recently submitted to the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). It is one of three applications from New Hampshire prepared in response to HUD's Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) for section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly.

A 16-unit project in Manchester and a 48-unit project in Londonderry are also on the list, according to a letter sent last week to New Hampshire's four-member Congressional delegation by executive director Gale Hennessy of Southern N. H. Management Corp., an affiliate of Southern N. H. Services (SNHS) of Manchester (www.snhs.org).

After being rated and ranked by the Region I HUD staff in Boston, Mass., these three Granite State projects were forwarded to HUD's main office in Washington, D.C.

There, using a new approach adopted by HUD for the 2012 funding cycle, all the project applications submitted from the three northern New England states — New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont — will compete for funding along with projects submitted by the three southern New England states — Massachusetts, R. I., and Connecticut. Previously, a funding pool was "reserved" for the trio of northern New England states.

Senior housing is a permitted use at the Bridge Street location, wrote Phil Grandmaison of SNHS in an email exchange. Apartments — all one-bedroom ground-level units — would be in the 530- to 540-square-foot range, each with its own kitchen. A community room would be located on site, complete with a computer area on the first floor and typically two or three other office spaces, likely on the second floor, one of which would be used by a part-time manager.

Monthly rents typically are in the $300 to $400 range, depending on income, Grandmaison explained. All utilities except telephone and cable would be included. A Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) would be made to the town.

According to SNHS's website, the agency "continues to maintain its place as one of the state's leading providers of housing to low-income eligible senior citizens. Funding from HUD's Section 202 Supportive Housing Program has enabled us to build and manage 19 elderly housing projects, reflecting 695 affordable apartments. The low-income residents of these apartments pay 30 percent of their income for rent, with the balance subsidized under HUD's Section 8 Rental Assistance Program. Heat and utilities are included in the rent.

Projects include 28 units at the Common Man Commons at 48 West Street in Ashland; 24 units in Echo Valley Village at 20 Back Lake Road in Pittsburg; 19 units in Riverview Village at 780 Lake Street in Bristol; and 20 units at Sherburne Woods on Old Center Road, the main street in Deerfield Center.

A residence is now under construction in Campton with two more — in Plymouth and North Woodstock — scheduled to break ground next month, Grandmaison reported.

Jeff Woodburn of Dalton, who is a reporter for this Salmon Press newspaper as well as the Berlin Reporter, is the buyer's representative involved in this potential transaction.

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