Conversion of downtown Houlton building into apartments would help ease housing crunch
HOULTON, Maine — The Houlton Town Council is aiding a developer request funding to renovate section of a downtown business creating into 10 residences.
The city will file an application for a approximately $500,000 condition Community Progress Block Grant on behalf of Shiretown Homes LLC this 7 days primarily based on the council’s unanimous vote in favor of the motion Monday, May perhaps 16.
The council’s determination arrives right after a tragic a few-tale multi-unit apartment creating fireplace on Mechanic Street in March killed a 4-calendar year-previous boy and still left 38 folks homeless, producing an currently really serious have to have for very affordable housing in Houlton even worse.
Houlton Local community Advancement Director Nancy Ketch explained there is a remarkable need to have for more housing and that the proposed job would change latest professional house to 10 residential units, with a sprinkler technique, energy-economical updates and parking space paving.
The new apartments will be designed on the 2nd ground of the Key Bank setting up at the corner of Industry Sq. and Water Road.
To meet up with CDBG suggestions, 51 percent, or six of the units, would be selected for lower-to-reasonable revenue unique people today or families, Ketch said.
Developer John Harvell pressured this is not state-backed housing. The vote in favor of implementing for the grant income was held following a community hearing.
“I am incredibly substantially in favor of this venture. I imagine it’s an excellent repurpose of this making. It addresses cost-effective housing here in the city of Houlton, and I feel it is heading to be an extraordinary boon to the downtown region,” Councilor Sue Tortello said all through the community listening to Monday night time.
If the task is funded, the current second-ground business tenants will go to other downtown destinations.
Northern Lighthouse on the very first flooring is going out of the constructing and Community Health and Counseling Expert services, now on the 2nd flooring, will shift into that area, Harvell said. This grant application is via the CDBG Housing Support Plan. Despite the fact that Houlton has been awarded other CDBG grants, this is the initial Housing Assistance Software application the city has made, Ketch stated.
The KeyBank making at 41 Industry Square is for industrial use on the very first and 2nd flooring and the third is residential. If the project proceeds, the second flooring would turn out to be wholly household, necessitating a new sprinkler method on each the second and third flooring.
In March, the city submitted a letter of intent to the state about the funding and was then invited to utilize. Ketch stated this fairly narrows the opposition for the grant money. This year, the Housing Aid Application has $20 million that will be dispersed through the state.
“The reality that we were invited to use is a really fantastic sign,” Ketch explained. “It’s even now no warranty.”
The grant purposes will be judged on a position technique — community effect (40 details), advancement strategy (40 factors), resident help ( 20 factors) — and major scoring candidates will then be invited to take part in the job advancement period. Nevertheless, this does not guarantee funding. Awards will be announced at the close of the growth phase.
Ketch claimed the city will most likely listen to about the standing of its application in late June.
“Because there is these kinds of a need to have, we are enthusiastic to be associated in the method,” Ketch mentioned on Tuesday. “This project will be very good for the local community.”
Councilors Mark Horvath and James Peters had been absent.
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