August 22, 2016
Like many of the housing developments that CHP undertakes, the Cornerstone Apartments redevelopment project in Lynchburg, Va. was a complicated jigsaw puzzle of multiple partners and funding sources. What makes the Cornerstone Apartments project stand out, however, was the passionate commitment of our partners to preserving and improving the permanent supportive housing for low-income individuals with mental impairments.
Upon deciding to cease its business operations, Lynchburg Neighborhood Development Foundation (LNDF) sought a mission-oriented buyer to take over ownership and operations of the special needs rental community. As a result, CHP purchased the property and set out to secure renovation funding from long-time partners Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA) and the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). Recognizing the importance of this rental community to such a vulnerable population, VHDA contributed $200,000 and DHCD provided $100,000.
“This project was at the very top of our list as far as mission goes,” said CHP Chief Financial Officer Jeff Reed. “With the help of grant funds from our partners we were able to not only make this property safe and decent, but something we can all be proud of for many years into the future.”
In the spring of 2016, under the oversight of CHP Vice President of Property Management Scott Reithel, construction on the 1920s and 1940s-era buildings began. When completed in the summer of 2016, the rehabilitation not only successfully corrected all known safety issues, but also made the buildings much more energy efficient.
Details of the renovation included a new roof; window repairs and replacements; new mini-split heating and cooling units for each apartment; energy efficient hot water tanks; energy efficient bath exhaust fans and light fixtures; low-flush toilets; new vinyl wood plank flooring; painting; drywall repairs; new kitchen cabinets and counter tops; insulation of basements, attics, and sidewalls; asbestos removal; weather sealing of windows and doors; electrical and plumbing repairs and upgrades; pest remediation; emergency exit LED lighting in the communal hallways; exterior LED security lighting; new storage/workshop building; and new landscaping.
“Thanks to the collaborative efforts of CHP, VHDA, and DHCD, Lynchburg renters now have access to 11 newly preserved, healthy, and affordable apartments, which is significant in a time when every community in the nation is facing a shortage of quality affordable housing,” remarked Reithel.