By Joan F. Simoneau, Community Reporter
Marlborough – Marlborough Community Development Authority (MCDA) Housing Director Douglas Bushman and members of the MCDA Board are currently working with architects to design plans to renovate housing at 29 Pleasant St. With the exception of the original construction of the city’s three housing properties, this $3 million project will be the largest undertaken.
“Two-thirds of the project is being funded by a Department of Housing and Community Development grant, with the balance paid for by savings generated by the MCDA’s solar net-metering credit program which will be starting in August,” said Bushman. “The MCDA is the last housing authority to be funded under the innovative program, High Leveraged Asset Preservation Program (HLAPP).”
Replacing electrical units, bathroom and kitchen flooring, windows, balconies and appliances are projects planned. Also being considered is updating outside walls, sprinkler systems, security and fire alarms. They are hoping to have the design completed by November, go out to bid in January, and begin activity in the spring of 2017.
Through the state Relocation Act, tenants will be provided with suitable housing while renovations are taking place and move back as each unit is completed and safe.
More than $1 million has been expended during this past fiscal year, from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016.
“We have a track record of expending capital funds to such a degree that there is only one other state housing authority in Massachusetts with a higher record and that is Worcester,” said Bushman. “It helps with the local economy and it is improving our housing stock and per ‘the broken windows theory of crime control,’ the cleaner the property the less crime and mischief we will experience.”
The Marlborough Housing Division maintains a total of 230 units throughout the city at 29 Pleasant St., 397 Bolton St. and 240 Main St. Bushman and his staff moved to its new location at 240 Main St. in December. The relocation has centralized operations and enhanced communication between the MCDA staff and tenants at the adjacent apartment complex.