Ribbon-cutting celebrated at Laurentide Apartments in Burlington

By: Mia Watson

VHFA Executive Director Maura Collins joined Lieutenant Governor Dave Zuckerman, Mayor Miro Weinberger, affordable housing advocates, and future residents at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Monday at Laurentide Apartments in Burlington. The new building, developed by Champlain Housing Trust and Housing Vermont, offers 76 apartments including 52 affordable apartments for low and moderate income households. The project received the majority of its funding from federal tax credits and loans awarded by VHFA.  

Laurentide Apartments is one of the first buildings to be completed at the new Cambrian Rise neighborhood off North Avenue overlooking the shores of Lake Champlain. Just two weeks ago, VHFA celebrated the start of construction at neighboring Juniper House. In total, the Cambrian Rise development will create over 800 new homes for both renters and homebuyers at a wide range of income levels. The new neighborhood is an important addition to Burlington’s tight housing market, which has a very low rental vacancy rate of just 1.5% and high rents.

"We're able to not just cut a ribbon on 76 apartments today, but also know that we're doing so much more with that investment and with this land," remarked Maura Collins.

Laurentide Apartments will serve a variety of income levels, ranging from 12 apartments for households who are transitioning out of homelessness to 24 apartments rented at market rates. According to Champlain Housing Trust, rents will range from $713 to $1,100 per month for a 1-bedroom apartment, $852 to $1,397 per month for a 2-bedroom apartment and $1,193 to $1,630 per month for a 3-bedroom apartment, with additional rental assistance available for the lowest-income households.

The $20 million project received $1,380,000 in federal housing tax credits awarded by VHFA.  The tax credits were purchased by People’s United Bank, raising an estimated total of $12.4 million in equity for construction. The project also received a $4.1 million loan from VHFA. Other funders included Vermont Housing and Conservation Board (VHCB), the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) HOME program, the National Housing Trust Fund (NHFT), the Burlington Housing Trust Fund and Neighborworks.

Laurentide and Juniper House are just two of several project groundbreakings and ribbon-cutting events taking place this month and next month. VHFA staff also recently attended a groundbreaking ceremony at Lake Paran Village in Shaftsbury with Shires Housing and a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Casavant Overlook in Winooski with Summit Properties.

Photo courtesy of Champlain Housing Trust