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Carlisle

Carlisle Borough, Cumberland County Redevelopment Authority break ground on project for first-time homebuyers

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The latest chapter in Carlisle Borough’s partnership with the Redevelopment Authority of the County of Cumberland opened Monday with a groundbreaking event at the site of its project at 157-159 E. South St.

The site was formerly home to a blighted property that has since been demolished to make way for construction of a duplex that will be made available to low- to moderate-income first-time home buyers.

“We should recognize the context of this today in a housing market that is incredibly difficult for a lot of folks with sales prices on the rise and rent on the rise,” Deputy Mayor Sean Shultz said Monday. “We’re going to be able to provide an affordable option for some folks right on this site.”

The borough applied for a $553,000 Home Investment Partnerships Program grant from the Department of Community and Economic Development in February 2018.

In the past, the borough has used Home funds for low- to moderate-homeownership programs including Pitt Street Pride, North Street Pride, West Street Pride and the East End Homeownership initiatives, Borough Manager Susan Armstrong said. These projects occurred over more than a decade in partnership with the Carlisle Housing Opportunities Corp. with the Redevelopment Authority as grant administrator.

As required by DCED, the borough partnered with Tri-County Housing Development Corp., a nonprofit Community Housing Development Organization, which has staff in place to develop housing for the community it serves.

The borough received conditional approval for the grant in May 2018 at which time it identified the South Street property as meeting Home program objectives as well as the borough’s efforts to address blight, Armstrong said.

Those interested in purchasing the homes will need to meet guidelines for income eligibility and credit worthiness established by the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Participants in the program are also required to attend HUD-certified, pre-purchase counseling, such as that offered by the Redevelopment Authority or Tri-County, Armstrong said.

In addition to being awarded the Home grant funds of $553,000 for the project, the borough will also provide $30,000 in CDBG funds for down payment and closing cost assistance.

Construction of the homes has begun and is expected to be finished in November.

Email Tammie at tgitt@cumberlink.com. Follow her on Twitter @TammieGitt.

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