Groundbreaking celebrated at Juniper House in Burlington

By: Mia Watson

Last week Governor Phil Scott joined VHFA Executive Director Maura Collins, Mayor Miro Weinberger and affordable housing developers and advocates at the new Cambrian Rise Neighborhood in Burlington to celebrate the groundbreaking of Juniper House. The project, developed by Cathedral Square Corporation, will create 70 one and two bedroom apartments for seniors. The project received the majority of its funding from federal tax credits and loans awarded by VHFA.

Cambrian Rise is a new inclusive neighborhood half a mile from downtown Burlington that will create 700 new market rate and affordable apartments and condominiums. Juniper House was named for its view of Juniper Island in Lake Champlain. The building will incorporate Universal Design principals to maximize accessibility, will use energy efficient building and heating techniques and will offer residents easy access to public transportation and recreation paths. All residents will have access to SASH (Support and Services at Home), a care-coordination program created by Cathedral Square that helps residents live safely, comfortably and independently.

The new apartments at Juniper House will serve a variety of income levels, ranging from ten market rate apartments to 25 apartments reserved for households earning less than 30% of the area median income, or $22,000 for a two-person household. These apartments will receive HUD Section 8 Project Based Assistance, which limits the rent to 30% of household income, the federal standard of affordability.

In addition, seven of the apartments will be reserved for formerly homeless or at-risk senior households, and Cathedral Square Corporation will add an additional three more apartments for formerly homeless seniors elsewhere in its portfolio as part of the project.

The $19 million project received $11.3 million in equity from federal and state housing tax credits and $2.6 million in loans awarded by VHFA. This project also received funding from Vermont Housing and Conservation Board (VHCB), the Burlington Housing Trust Fund, the National Housing Trust Fund, and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) HOME program.

The project is expected to be completed in early 2021.

Photo courtesy of Cathedral Square

The Vermont COVID Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program is no longer accepting applications. For emergency rental assistance, please contact Vermont State Housing Authority.