The recent upsurge of redevelopment in Hartford's Frog Hollow
neighborhood took another step forward Friday with the official
groundbreaking of a new homeownership project on Affleck Street.
The $3 million project, known as Frog Hollow Homes, will convert
five apartment buildings into a total of 26 units of co-op housing.
A spokesman for Broad-Park Development Corporation said the rehabilitation
of the properties should take about a year. Current residents
of the buildings will be relocated to other Broad-Park properties
during the construction phase and will be given preference in
selecting resident-owners when Frog Hollow Homes is completed.
Friday's event was hosted by Broad-Park, which is the lead developer
of the project in partnership with the Southside Institutions
Neighborhood Alliance (SINA), the Frog Hollow Revitalization
Committee and the Spanish American Merchants Association.
Broad-Park purchased the five buildings on Affleck Street in
the late 1970's and early 1980's to preserve them for rehabilitation
as affordable rental housing in the future. In recent years,
however, neighborhood leaders and organizations began to push
for more home-ownership in Frog Hollow to increase neighborhood
stability and property values. In response to this need, Broad-Park
began to look for a way to convert the properties into a homeownership
project. This was made possible by an agreement with the Massachusetts
Mutual Life Insurance Company whereby a series of loans made
to Broad-Park were converted into grants, allowing the sale of
the properties to the new organization known as Frog Hollow Homes.
When completed and occupied, Frog Hollow Homes will be run by
an association of residents in partnership with Broad-Park. The
Residents' Association will make house rules for the development
and members will have seats on Broad-Park's Property Management
Committee. Broad-Park will own the properties and lease the units
to the resident-owners of the co-op.
Funding for the project is coming from a variety of sources,
including the City of Hartford, Connecticut Housing Finance Authority,
the National Equity Fund, the Local Initiative Support Corporation
(LISC) and the Federal Home Loan Bank Affordable Housing Program
through People's Bank.