September 30 - October 7, 1998

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Model Home Unveiled in Frog Hollow


The ongoing revitalization of Frog Hollow took another big step forward with the official ribbon-cutting ceremony of a newly constructed, two-family model home at 243-245 Jefferson Street, part of the "Cityscape" Home Ownership Program designed to attract first-time buyers to this venerable city neighborhood on the rebound.
The home is the first of 84 newly constructed or renovated two-family homes to be placed on the market by Pope Park Zion, LLC, throughout an 18-block area in Frog Hollow. Pope Park Zion, LLC, is a unique collaboration of the Broad Park Development Corporation, Mutual Housing Association of Greater Hartford and Southside Institutions Neighborhood Alliance (SINA). Cityscape is supported by People's Bank.

"We believe the future of Hartford rests with its neighborhoods," said Ross Burkhardt, Executive Director of Broad Park Development Corporation. "This model home is the latest step in bringing this neighborhood plan into reality. Getting here has required vision, perseverance and enormous effort by many individuals working through and with community organizations such as the Frog Hollow Revitalization Committee, HART [Hartford Areas Rally Together], SINA and others. We congratulate Hartford Hospital and all the other SINA partners for their commitment to Hartford's neighborhoods and look forward to working with them in finishing the Cityscape plan."

The Cityscape program offers qualified buyers low down payments, down payment assistance, favorable mortgage terms, homebuyer education and membership in a homeowners association. Homes prices start at $95,000 for renovated homes, and $97,000 for newly constructed homes. Buyers with incomes of between 50 and 80 percent of the area median - or $29,450 to $47,120 - can qualify.

Financing may involve a variety of existing government or private sources, while People's Bank will offer attractive first mortgages.
Homebuyers may access the City of Hartford's successful HouseHartford program and the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority's first-time buyer and down payment assistance programs

Cityscape homes will be concentrated in four Frog Hollow areas:
"Gatewav" at Zion, Ward and York Streets; "Trinity Heights" at School and Colonial Streets; "Presidential Corners" at Jefferson, Madison and Lincoln Streets; and "Park Street South" at Park, Zion, Ward and Wolcott Streets. Most homes include two or three bedrooms, 1 1/2 baths, a fully applianced kitchen, full basement, security systems and off-street parking.

A total of 33 existing homes are being renovated, while 51 new homes are being constructed. The two-family style of each home is designed to complement the neighborhood's existing housing stock and to provide a source of rental income for new owners as a way of meeting the financial obligation.

As part of the program, Pope Park Zion, LLC, People's Bank and HART have developed a series of workshops for all pre-qualified applicants. The workshops will assist applicants with such issues as home affordability, mortgage qualification, planning and budgeting for a new home and managing rental property.

The Cityscape Home Ownership Program is one component of a massive $175 million revitalization of Frog Hollow sponsored by SINA a coalition of Connecticut Children's Medical Center, Connecticut Public Television & Radio, Hartford Hospital, the Institute of Living and Trinity College.

In addition to new housing, the project includes the Learning Corridor (construction of three schools linking the Institute of Living and Trinity College), a new Boys and Girls Club, four new neighborhood parks, and the HART Community Job Center which works with SINA institutions through the Good Neighbors Job Partnership


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