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Bright Street Housing Co-op wins National Award

Posted on Friday, February 10, 2017, by Chris Donnelly


The Bright Street Housing Cooperative has been selected for the 2017 Audrey Nelson Community Development Achievement Award from the National Community Development Association. Bright Street Housing Co-op is a new, 40 home development created by Champlain Housing Trust and Housing Vermont in Burlington’s Old North End. The City of Burlington and its Community and Economic Development Office, which sponsored the award, will be recognized on February 17 at a ceremony in Washington, DC on behalf of the co-op. It was one of six other communities selected to receive the award.

“One of the primary focuses of this Administration has been on addressing Burlington’s affordable housing crisis,” said Mayor Miro Weinberger. “The City was pleased to support Champlain Housing Trust and Housing Vermont in the creation of 40 much-needed units that will provide homes for families and individuals from a range of backgrounds and income levels. We are thrilled that the product of this partnership has been recognized by the national Audrey Nelson Community Development Achievement Award.”

The co-op received funding through the City’s Community Development Grant program, its HOME allocation and the Burlington Housing Trust Fund, as well state and national sources such as the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board, tax credits allocated by the Vermont Housing Finance Agency, and NeighborWorks America. The TD Charitable Foundation selected Bright Street as a winner in its annual Housing for Everyone competition.

Residents moved in this past fall, following a large community ribbon cutting celebration which coincided with a trip to Burlington from then-HUD Secretary Julian Castro, organized by Senator Patrick Leahy.


Bright Street Co-op Update

Posted on Tuesday, September 22, 2015, by Jonathan Shenton

A New Housing Option in the Old North End.


Update

We are moving full steam ahead on creating a new, 40-unit housing cooperative on Bright Street. Construction has begun, and our Selection Committee (members of other housing co-ops) is starting to interview applicants.

The way to apply is to attend an orientation and then submit an application; you can find the next orientation dates and register for one via our calendar. Applicants will be considered in date order.

As well as the autonomy, community and security that all co-ops offer, the Bright Street Co-op will provide underground parking, covered bike parking, a community room, and laundry facilities on-site. We are also working with the city to try to create a community garden right next to the co-op.

What is a housing cooperative?

In a housing co-op “the members are the landlord.” It is a business that the members own and run together, doing the work a landlord would do in a rental.

The shared control and responsibility makes co-ops different from either renting or owning your own home. Financially a co-op is more like renting, but the members’ control and responsibility lead to an ‘ownership attitude’ without the financial commitment of buying a home.

Cooperative housing is not for everyone. As an intentional community it is ideal for people with the desire and skills to work with their neighbors and to help create a stable community.

The co-op will feature:

  • Forty apartments and townhomes 
  • A vibrant mix of household sizes and incomes
  • New, energy-efficient construction 
  • Self-management that brings a sense of community and security
  • Underground parking, laundry room, community room, elevator
  • Shared outdoor space

Time frame

  • Construction started in August, 2015; we expect to open in the fall of 2016. 
  • We are taking applications now.

Apartment sizes and approximate monthly charges (heat included):

Thirteen 1BR apartments in the range of $675 to $975/month
Twenty-one 2BR apartments in the range of $780 to $1,250/month
Five 3BR apartments in the range of $975 to $1,350/month
One 4BR apartment in the range of $1,300 to $1,450/month

Interested? To learn more and apply, come to a one-hour Orientation to Cooperatives. 
Register online or with Julia Curry at jcurry@getahome.org or (802) 861-7378.

Home Sweet Housing Co-op

Posted on Friday, September 18, 2015, by Julia Curry

One of Burlington’s best-kept housing secrets is about to become better known!

On Saturday, October 3rd, leaders of housing cooperatives in Vermont and Montreal will explain how their co-ops work and why they love them. Co-ops have operated in Burlington for over 20 years and in Montreal for over 30, and new ones continue to form.

Housing co-ops offer self-determination, security, and a unique form of community. They may be apartments or mobile homes and may have 18 households or 100, but whatever their size and shape, they are democratically run by their members.

Bonus: Come learn about co-ops of all kinds! Tabling fair starts at 2pm in the lobby.

Home Sweet Housing Co-op: A Public Forum Saturday, October 3rd, 2015 

  • 2 – 3 pm    Cooperative business fair
  • 3 – 5 pm    Home Sweet Housing Co-op: A Public Forum

Contois Auditorium, Burlington City Hall, 149 Church Street


Housing For Everyone Award

Posted on Wednesday, November 13, 2013, by Chris Donnelly

TD Everyone Award Announcement

The Champlain Housing Trust and TD Charitable Foundation announced today the investment of a $100,000 grant to a housing and community development effort in Burlington’s Old North End. The award is just one of 25 grants made from TD Charitable Foundation’s Housing for Everyone competition, and is the only one recognized in Vermont.

“We are very thankful for TD’s commitment to our work to rejuvenate this block in the Old North End,” said Brenda Torpy, CHT’s CEO. “In these days where there are fewer federal resources but increased demand for affordable housing, this award is a welcome and appreciated contribution to our development plans on Archibald and Bright Streets.”

The grant is funding CHT’s work with Housing Vermont to redevelop an urban brownfield with four existing structures in Burlington’s Old North End into the Bright Street Housing Cooperative – 42 newly constructed homes in a resident-controlled housing development. Developing new, affordable housing in Chittenden County is critical with a 1% vacancy rate and rents that have increased by nearly 50% since 2007.

“We are excited to support the transformation of a full block which needs more affordable housing and is in one of the most diverse neighborhoods in Vermont,” said Phil Daniels, Vermont President of TD Bank. “The Champlain Housing Trust has a long and successful history contributing to the vibrancy of the Old North End, and we are happy to be able to support their next development there.”

The Housing for Everyone competition received 300 applications with 25 winners from Maine to Florida. This year’s theme was “Neighborhood Revitalization and Stabilization” with a focus on preservation, rehabilitation and expansion of viable affordable housing proprieties or utilization of abandoned properties for affordable housing. The Bright Street development covered all of these bases. Each application was evaluated on merits of the proposal, the organization’s viability and sustainability, the organization’s governance strength and structure, and history of organization’s involvement with affordable housing. The development’s many green features, including energy efficiency and garden space, scored extra points in its judging.

Four buildings will be constructed on the site; one large building with 35 apartments, and three other buildings with a total seven apartments scattered amongst them will form the streetscape. The larger building will be developed in the middle of the block. For a visual of the site plan, visit http://bit.ly/brightstreet. The plan envisions several eco-features, such as community garden space in raised beds, the possibility of solar panels on the roof stormwater collection for watering gardens and clotheslines.

“The redevelopment of this area of Bright Street is an ambitious project,” said Nancy Owens, President of Housing Vermont, a partner in the development. “The grant from the TD Charitable Foundation will enable us to create housing that will benefit the neighborhood for years to come.”

The development will be under construction in late summer of fall of 2014, beginning with the demolition of buildings along Bright Street. Occupancy in the new co-op is expected to be in late summer 2015.