Bad River Housing Authority (BRHA) staff members, tribal council members, new residents and tribal members of the Bad River Band of Chippewa Indians gathered together earlier this month to celebrate the completion of BRHA’s second Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) project, a complete renovation of 24 units.
The ribbon-cutting ceremony took place in front of one of the newly renovated duplexes, which was renovated and had both units modified to improve accessibility and comply with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Several tenants who use wheelchairs can now access the homes more easily with new wooden exterior ramps.
BRHA Executive Director Cheryl Cloud spoke to the crowd about the significance of this project in their community and how she hopes that this investment will lead to more development for their tribe in the future. Following the ceremony, BRHA hosted a reception next to the Bad River Casino and Lodge. Everyone was invited to join for cake and refreshments and to socialize.
Bad River Housing Authority also took the opportunity to gather votes on a new playground, which they plan to build at the edge of the neighborhood. They had voting sheets for community input on playground equipment and the new park layout.
Other project partners were in attendance for the celebration too: Commonwealth Construction, the general contractor and site supervisor; Black Wolf Construction, the subcontractor who provided a local labor force and completed the majority of construction; and Blakeman Plumbing, the project’s plumbing subcontractor.
The Bad River Homes II project planning began in 2014. The housing authority’s second LIHTC project took several rounds of bidding and value engineering, a year of construction (that was substantially complete two months early), and it turned out to be quite a success!
While the LIHTC allocation provided significant investor funding for the project, BRHA opted to find additional funds in order to do the rehabilitation they believed these units really needed. Prior to rehab, most of the units suffered signification water infiltration and had mold damage. All 24 units had gone largely untouched for the last 30 years and were in need of a complete overhaul, which is just what they got!
The scope of work for the project included:
- waterproofing and continuous insulation around foundation perimeters
- new Energy Star roofs
- new gutters and roof venting
- new siding and trim
- new Energy Star windows and doors
- new exterior wall insulation (Spray foam will help seal gaps in the assembly and help to prevent the resurgence of mold)
- new wood ramps at five ADA-compliant units
- new driveways and concrete stoops and sidewalks
- new clotheslines and planting beds
- mold and asbestos abatement
- new flooring
- new drywall and paint
- new doors, trim and cabinets
- new appliances
- new plumbing pipes and fixtures, electrical receptacles and equipment, and HVAC equipment
- new window treatments
The newly renovated homes feature energy-efficient plumbing fixtures and faucets, lighting, and furnaces/air conditioners. Additionally, the building envelope features high insulation values, which help to minimize heat loss. All of these features combined will lower tenants utility bills significantly, and there is the obvious benefit of reducing energy consumption with the environment in mind.
Congratulations to Bad River Housing Authority for all of its hard work! We look forward to sharing more details about the new park area that is coming next.