The Beulah Land Development Corp., and Community Builders, Inc. are joining hands and hammers this summer to provide low-cost housing for senior citizens.
The renovation of a circa 1910 brick-faced three story apartment structure into 12 single bedroom elderly units in New Haven’s Munson-Dixwell section is part of an on-going blockwide renovation process. The apartment will be named the Walter S. Brooks Elderly Home at Ormont Court after the brother of Bishop Theodore L. Brooks, who runs the BLDC with his son Darrell. Walter Brooks was a five-term state representative and former Housing Authority chairman.
The BLDC is an offshoot of the Beulah Heights First Pentecostal Church, where Theodore Brooks is a Bishop.
Elizabeth Torres, the associate project manager of the Community Builders, wrote that the program’s primary aim is to allow 12 elderly residents to maintain independence in their private apartments while gaining access to a wide range of flexible community support systems.
Torres added that the primary funding source for the development at this senior facility will be through the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Section 202 program, which was approved in May 2001.
To reside at Ormont Court, seniors must earn less than 50 percent of the area’s median income. The proposed rents for this development are anticipated to be $550 per unit. Each unit will also have a subsidy attached provided by the 202 program to reduce the amount of rent paid by the tenant.
In addition to HUD, Torres wrote that city pre-development and development funds from the not-for-profit group Housing Opportunities and Maintenance for the Elderly as well as state bond funds will be used to help subsidize the project.
The design of the dwelling units and common areas at Ormont Court supports the concept of “aging-in-place” by not requiring residents to change apartments or buildings as their physical needs change over time. Three of the dwelling units are handicap accessible, and the remaining nine units will eventually be handicap adaptable.
The first phase of the project saw the completion of 10 homeownership units that have been sold already. The next phase, which includes Ormont Court, should result in the completion of 20 new units.
Completion of construction is expected in about a year.