Hickory Glen Apartments Breaks Ground
It had been a long time coming as the dirt was officially turned during the ground breaking ceremony for the Village Learning and Achievement Center's Hickory Glen Apartments in Houston, TX. As a result of a joint venture between the Mental Health and Mental Retardation Authority (MHMRA) of Harris County, the Village Learning and Achievement Center, the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development and the City of Houston Housing and Community Development Department, the Hickory Glen Apartments is an affordable housing project that will give people with special needs and their families an affordable place to stay. The parties celebrated the beginning of construction on the $2.845 million project with a special ground breaking ceremony on October 23, 2012.
"This has taken us four years and we are very excited. The first thing we had to do was go to the Friendswood Development Company and the Northpark Community Association to ask for permission to build a multifamily housing unit for adults with special needs," said Kim Brusatori, Executive Director of the Village Learning and Achievement Center. "There are some individuals with developmental disabilities who do not work and normally live at home for as long as their parents are able to take care of them. When the parents try to transition them into independent living, the state of Texas will give them money for food, clothing and shelter but it is only a little more than $650. Since a lot of the parents with children at the Village Learning and Achievement Center are single parents, they cannot afford to find a decent place to live; therefore, they wanted to provide an option for those families and the Hickory Glen Apartments will help."
Steven Schnee, Executive Director of MHMRA, noted, "There is a need in every community for programs and services for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities. The Community of Kingwood, by allowing a Section 811 project, has shown that it cares for each of its citizens."
Raynold Richardson, Director of Multifamily Housing, HUD Houston Multifamily Program Center, stated, "The Department of Housing and Urban Development is proud to work with MHMRA of Harris County, Village Learning and Achievement Center, City of Houston Housing and Community Development Department relative to the Section 811 program. The agency appreciates the collaboration between federal and local government and the private sector to provide and sustain decent and safe affordable housing for the special needs community."
Village Learning received a $1,816,800 Capital Advance grant pursuant to HUD's Section 811 Supportive Housing for Persons with Disabilities program; $881,000 of HOME funds from the City of Houston; $98,000 from the Federal Home Loan Bank, and $50,000 from the Meadow Foundation for the construction of the facility.
Eta Paransky, Director, Multifamily Division, City of Houston Housing Community and Planning Department, stated, "They had to work hard to get this unique project through since it was the first of its kind in the Kingwood area. Sometimes we have to push the boundaries to make things happen."
Steve Matkovich, Federal Home Loan Bank, commented, "VAHG is a special project which the Federal Home Loan Bank, together with its member banks and institutions, have pride in funding."
Brian Stoker, Senior Vice President, Amegy Bank, added, "Amegy Bank provided pre-development funding to the project and was happy to be a part of the process to provide affordable housing to the Kingwood community."
|Content Archived: February 26, 2014|