ASHEBORO — The Asheboro City Council has approved the application for a grant to renovate CASPN Homes.
The application by the city will be to the NC Department of Commerce Rural Economic Development for a Community Development Block Grant — Neighborhood Revitalization. The application will request up to $950,000 to preserve and renovate CASPN Homes, a 50-unit independent living development at 945 S. Church St. which serves families 55 years of age and older earning 60 percent or less of the area’s median income.
CASPN Homes was built in 1998 as part of a Low-Income Housing Tax Credit project with the NC Housing Finance Agency. It’s owned by Wainman Homes, Inc., a nonprofit operated, managed and maintained by the Asheboro Housing Authority.
The proposed renovations include: new exterior siding and insulation, new windows, porch/deck rehabilitation and repair/staining, new carpet in hallways and tile in common areas, replacement of HVAC units and water heaters, new security features including cameras and electric entry on all floors and entrances, and erosion control measures and landscaping.
Financial assistance for rehabilitation must be in the form of a loan, not a grant. But CDBG loans may be deferred, deferred forgivable or amortized with low interest. It’s expected that his project will request a deferred forgivable loan.
Prior to voting on the measure, a public hearing was held to receive public input. Speaking on behalf of CASPN Homes were Bob Lawler and Andrew Scott. Also speaking was Mary Anne Hyatt, a CASPN resident.
In response to a question concerning the estimated cost of renovations, Lawler said, “Nowadays, 'what's the price of something three months down the road?' the answer is anybody's guess."
Scott said, “The downside of a federal grant is lots of rules and regulations.” He said the project would “take about 18 months.” No city funds would be used.
Hyatt was concerned about security, including lights in the rear of the facility and locks to exterior doors. "Senior citizens sometimes have a lot more fear than younger people. It's harder to find low income, subsidized housing," she said.
She was assured that the city would go over her issues with planners of the renovations.