CMHA set to renovate Union-Miles senior living building over next year –

union square

Union Square.

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Cleveland Metropolitan Housing Authority has plans to renovate a nine-story, 173-unit apartment building in the city’s Union-Miles neighborhood over the next year.

The public housing agency will do the work on the units at Union Square, 3495 E. 98th St. The agency will spend $1.3 million on repairs and renovations identified in an assessment of the building on the city’s southeast side, and is required under a Housing and Urban Development program in which it is participating to put $1.1 million down for potential future repairs.

The improvements to the 50-year high-rise, designed for senior citizens, will include renovating kitchens and bathrooms, upgrading electrical outlets and making the building easier to traverse by disabled people.

Workers will also replace sliding glass doors, repair units that sustained water damage and clean up the building’s facade, according to a news release sent Tuesday by the federal housing department.

The agency agreed to renovations as part of a “rental assistance demonstration” program through the federal housing department, led by former Cleveland-area Congresswoman Marcia Fudge, that seeks to address outstanding maintenance needed in the U.S. aging public housing buildings. The program essentially moves the money for the building from one subsidy program to another.

CMHA Chief of Staff Jeffrey Wade said the new subsidy – under Section 8, though distinct from the voucher program through which many people know that phrase – is paid out more often, runs in perpetuity and in the long run will result in more money.

The $2.4 million contribution will be paid for through a low-interest loan from the Federal Housing Agency, according to the release.

Union Square is just the latest CMHA-owned apartment building undergoing renovations as part of an undertaking that could take as long as 15 years to finish, Wade said. He added that about eight complexes totaling about 3,000 units have been renovated, and 1,000 were part of the same deal with the federal housing department that Union Square is. Most projects so far have cost between $1.3 million and $3 million, he said.

He said no residents will be displaced during the Union Square renovations.

“The beauty of the program no one has to go anywhere,” he said.

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