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Gov. Malloy Announces $23 Million to Support the Development of Affordable Housing in Six Connecticut Communities

Recipients Located in Bridgeport, Hartford, Middletown, New Britain, North Haven, and Norwich

(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Dannel P. Malloy and Connecticut Department of Housing (DOH) Commissioner Evonne M. Klein today announced that nearly $23 million in state funding is being awarded to support the development of affordable housing in six communities across Connecticut as part of the latest round of funding under the state’s Competitive Housing Assistance for Multifamily Properties (CHAMP) program. These awards will play a role in helping to create, rehabilitate, or preserve more than 200 units of affordable housing and greatly expanding access to mixed income and supportive housing units. These new units are essential in the state’s work to prevent and end homelessness.

“We have done more in affordable housing over the past several years than Connecticut has in decades – and this is yet another step in that direction,” Governor Malloy said. “These units will help hundreds of families, support municipalities, attract talented workers, contribute to our economic growth, and create the communities that will be more competitive in today’s business climate.”

“Connecticut has invested a billion dollars to expand housing options – funding that has spurred economic development, attracted business, and helped our communities become affordable to a young workforce,” Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman said. “These grants not only ensure continued progress, they also reflect our commitment to our cities and towns and the work they are doing on housing affordability.”

The CHAMP program, which is administered by DOH, provides developers and owners of multifamily affordable housing the necessary gap financing to create more affordable units in their developments.

“Affordable housing is a key component of economic growth and stability,” Commissioner Klein said. “These investments throughout the state ensure Connecticut’s continued economic recovery and the ability to remain an attractive state to call home, work, and raise a family. The CHAMP funding rounds provide an excellent opportunity for municipalities to attract a workforce, keep seniors in their community, give young families a start, and provide a stable home to someone experiencing homelessness. We’ve made real progress in the State of Connecticut, and these investments will ensure we can keep the momentum going.”

Since 2011, the state has created, rehabilitated, and preserved 9,636 affordable housing units. An additional 3,235 affordable units are under construction, and funding commitments are in place to create approximately 5,200 more units. The state’s investment in affordable housing totals about $1 billion dollars – a testament to the high level of commitment that is being made to prevent and end homelessness, while ensuring every resident has a place to call home. This investment in the housing industry has spurred another $2.5 billion in direct economic activity across the state.

The recipients of the tenth round of financing under the CHAMP program includes:

  • Bridgeport: West Liberty Commons – DOH will provide up to $3,598,912 to assist Bridgeport Neighborhood Trust in the development of 18 apartments, including 14 affordable units targeted to households with incomes at 25 percent, 50 percent and 60 percent of the area median income and four market rate apartments. The development will be located on West Avenue, within the Division Street Historic District, which is listed on the National Register. The location is in close proximity to parks, schools, and amenities, and is within one-half mile of the Bridgeport Multimodal Transportation Center, which includes a major railroad station, regional bus service, and ferry service to Long Island. The development is on the western edge of downtown Bridgeport, within the boundaries of the Bridgeport Urban Enterprise Zone, and will be supported by both a tax deferral and city HOME funds. Additional funding will be provided by the Federal Home Loan Bank, through its Affordable Housing Program, and People’s United Bank.

  • Hartford: Powerhouse Apartments – DOH will provide a loan of up to $4,400,000 to Hands on Hartford, Inc., to assist in the redevelopment of the vacant historic powerhouse facility formerly used to generate power for the Hartford Rubber Works industrial complex in the Parkville section of Hartford. This historic structure will be converted into 30 units of affordable housing. The Bartholomew Avenue site is adjacent to the CTfastrak Parkville stop. Also nearby is the Parkville community with restaurants, retail, Pope Park, and employment opportunities. The units will serve a mix of income ranges from 25 percent to 60 percent of the area median income. Other funding sources will include federal low-income housing tax credits, pending board approval, and state and federal historic tax credits.

  • Middletown: Mary Shepherd Home – DOH will provide a loan of up to $3,427,034 to Columbus House, Inc. to assist in the redevelopment of the Mary Shepherd Home. Located on the campus of Connecticut Valley Hospital, this project will redevelop a vacant historic property into 32 units of supportive housing. The development team, which also includes St. Vincent De Paul as the service provider, was selected through a competitive process by the City of Middletown to redevelop and reuse this surplus state property. Serving a range of incomes, the project will help to prevent homelessness and provide affordable housing to working individuals. Other sources of funds include federal low income housing tax credits and federal and state historic tax credits. Construction financing will be provided by the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority and the tax credit awards are pending board approval.

  • New Britain: Courtland Arms – DOH will provide a loan of up to $2,300,000 to assist in the redevelopment of the historic Courtland Arms property in downtown New Britain. This project will leverage an additional $6 million in non-DOH funding. Located within a short walking distance of the Downtown New Britain CTfastrak hub, this project will renovate 24 units that have been vacant since 1994. The project is located near an eclectic mix of small businesses, the Central Connecticut State University Institute of Technology and Business Development, banks, government and medical services, parks, shopping, and residential neighborhoods. The project will serve a mix of income levels, including four supportive housing units, 17 units with affordable rents, and three market-rate units.

  • North Haven: Clintonville Commons – DOH will provide a loan of up to $3,124,500 to develop eight units of affordable housing in North Haven. This development will create affordable housing opportunities while maintaining the character of the neighborhood by constructing four stand-alone two family structures in an open setting. The development will be owned and operated by North Haven Opportunity for Affordable Housing, Inc., and is adjacent to Hansen Park, which provides a variety of hiking and recreation opportunities. It is also close to the Clintonville Elementary School and a variety of retail and other commercial services. The housing will include both two and three bedroom apartments serving households with incomes at 25 percent of the area median income and up to 80 percent of the area median income.

  • Norwich: The Lofts at Ponemah Mills Phase 2 – DOH will provide up to $6,100,000 to assist in the second phase of the rehabilitation and adaptive reuse of the historic Ponemah Mills in the Taftville section of Norwich. Ponemah Mills was originally constructed in the 1860s and was one of the largest textile mills in the United States but has laid fallow and underutilized for decades. Restoration of the Ponemah Mills is a focal point in the city’s revitalization and economic development efforts. The city is supporting the development with a 15-year tax abatement through its “Mill Building Enhancement Program.” In addition to the state financing, the project will utilize both federal and state historic tax credits as well as federal low income housing tax credits and financing from the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority, pending board approval. Phase 2 of this project will create 121 new units of mixed-income family housing, including 74 affordable apartments and 47 market rate apartments. The first phase is currently under construction. A designated bus stop for Southeast Area Transit is located in front of the site, which is within a half mile of a neighborhood grocery store, bank, post office, and elementary school, and also has easy access to I-395. The development is also part of the Shetucket River Greenway, designated in 2012 by the Connecticut Greenways Council.

Funding for this round of financing is contingent upon approval of the State Bond Commission.

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