Lt. Governor Mike Foley and a number of other digintaries were on hand this morning as Western Nebraska Housing Opportunities and their partners celebrated the completion of the housing units in the east and west wings of the Eastwood Apartments.
The completion of the renovation to those parts of the former hotel and dormitory for the sugar factory will provide 12 additional affordable housing units for low-income residents utilizing section 8 vouchers.
Foley said the new units meet a significant need as the state’s workforce returns to the job market, which was present even before the economic turmoil caused by the virus pandemic.”We need more workforce housing, and you’ve started to answer that with some 25 beautiful units. I walked through it and it’s magnificent work, it really is first-class work, and anyone could live there very comfortably,” said Foley. “So congratulations to everyone in the community who pulled together and collaborated on this great project.”
Department of Economic Development Western Housing Representative Kristi McClung hailed the apartments as a prime example of the collaborative efforts sought out by NDED’s Housing Trust Fund, which she said don’t happen in a bubble. “They require the work and the help of all the participants. They require a lot of vision, they require partnerships, and while we’re proud to be a partner in the project, we’re a small partner” said McClung, “I walked through multiple times and have been able to see the work crew here as Rawnda enabled me to as the building was being re-hab’d. These units are needed; they’re needed so that Scottsbluff, Scotts Bluff County and the region can continue to grow.”
The state Housing Trust Fund provided $500,000 toward the renovation effort, with additional funding through local organization contributions, the City of Scottsbluff East Overland Facade Improvement program, and a First National Bank of Omaha Community Development Grant.
The new units start at $395 per month, utilities included, and six of them have already been spoken for. WNHO’s Rawnda Pierce said work still needs to be completed on the exterior, but the organization felt it was more important to get the interior units completed and ready to be occupied.