VHFA celebrates 86 apartments completed in Vergennes, Shaftsbury and Fair Haven

By: Leslie Black-Plumeau

VHFA Executive Director Maura Collins traveled the western side of the state in late September to celebrate the completion of 46 newly constructed and 40 renovated perpetually affordable apartments. “Affordable housing is needed now more than ever as we begin to recover from COVID-19," Collins remarked. “In addition to providing affordable, stable homes for Vermonters, these apartments boost the local economy, connecting residents with jobs and local businesses.”  

In Vergennes, Addison County Community Trust and Evernorth (formerly Housing Vermont) held a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Vergennes Community Housing. Located across the street from Vergennes Senior Housing built in 2012, the site is in walking distance of Vergennes’s downtown, with access to public transportation, schools, library, and businesses. The new building offers seven market rate apartments and 17 affordable apartments. Four apartments are dedicated to formerly homeless or at-risk Vermonters and enriched with supportive services to help them succeed. The site also features a beautiful playground and outdoor space for residents. The $7.2 million project received federal housing tax credits awarded by VHFA, which raised an estimated $4.3 million in equity for construction.  

In Shaftsbury, Shires Housing celebrated the opening of the Lake Paran Village neighborhood of 22 new energy-efficient rental homes.  In each apartment, state-of-the art sealant was used to tighten the home against weather and maximize energy efficiency. The neighborhood is connected to scenic Lake Paran by a recreation path.  VHFA federal housing tax credits provided approximately 67% of the dollars needed to complete the project.  

In Fair Haven, the Housing Trust of Rutland County completed the rehabilitation of 40 homes for elders and younger families on 10 acres. Originally built in 1980, the homes were occupied but in poor condition. Renovations brought the building up to current codes and significantly improved accessibility and energy efficiency. VHFA provided state and federal bond housing credits as well as a permanent loan that covered about 58% of the total costs of the rehabilitation project.  

In addition to VHFA, funders of the three projects included Vermont Housing and Conservation Board (VHCB), the Vermont Community Development Program (VCDP), the Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston’s Affordable Housing Program, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) HOME program, the National Housing Trust Fund, Efficiency Vermont and BROC Community Action.  

Pictured:  Vergennes Community Housing courtesy of Addison County Community Trust.