The Brighton Housing Authority has received $350,000 in federal grants to help the community recover from COVID-19, the agency announced Jan. 5.
Most of the new grants will be spent to help residents, individuals as well as families, navigate the housing market. That could include finding ways to purchase homes or qualifying for rentals.
A portion of the funds will also help with the food distribution bank at the authority’s Hughes Station property community room. Brighton Housing Authority Executive Director Debra Bristol said they are not experts in food access, so they will try to find a partner willing to come to the Brighton community and expand their service area.
“We’re still in the capacity building stages, but what we tried to do for all of the affordable housing projects here in the Brighton community, and in Adams County at large, is working with other service providers to identify gaps in the services, so that we can either help fill those gaps or help find ways to create partnerships to fill those gaps,” Bristol said.
The authority earmarked $5 million previously awarded for the Brighton Ridge Project, building 264 apartments for households with a 60% median income – about $23,000 per year. The project comprises 96 one-bedroom units, 120 two-bedroom units, and 48 three-bedroom units consisting of an 11 three-story residential building with 24 individual units. This project is still in the planning stages.
Bristol said the housing crisis is too much for one organization and community to overcome and said the authority hopes to find a partner, other developers or other affordable housing agencies, to promote their projects with possible resources.
“As a Housing Authority, we work with a diversity of organizations and service providers, and also developers, affordable housing developers and the owners of Brighton Ridge project,” Bristol said.
Bristol said they would run the facility for them, and the partner would provide the expert service and not worry about paying rent.
“It some of the barriers that can be difficult for nonprofits, especially in the economic climate that we’re currently in and even for nonprofits and commercial space, the rent prevents them from expanding their services,” Bristol said.
The funding will also help develop homeownership navigation. One of the most significant gaps the Housing Authority sees, especially for rentals, is with the lack of housing stock. It’s challenging to keep up with demand.
“One of the issues is how can we alleviate some of the pressures on the existing housing stock to help people move through what we call the housing continuum,” Bristol said.
“How can you get somebody from rental to homeownership, so that the rental units become available to those individuals who were maybe doubled up, living with another family?” she said. “We trying to focus on is developing a program that helps individuals navigate all of the homeownership resources out there, so they can find the best fit for them to make it a reality.”
For more information, contact the Brighton Housing Authority by phone at 303-655- 2160 or email email@example.com.