The Affordable Housing Trust voted to let Northern Berkshire Habitat for Humanity to proceed with a plan to build two houses on a Cole
Avenue lot. The nonprofit had applied to build three single-family homes.
After January's community forum where a number of neighbors objected to the idea of three homes on the parcel, Habitat came back to the Affordable Housing Trust for direction before the non-profit goes any further in its design process.
Habitat for Humanity in December discussed with the Affordable Housing Trust subdividing the parcel to create a third lot, a division that would be easier under the commonwealth's Chapter 40B provision, which gives relief from local zoning to subsidized housing projects.
Northern Berkshire Habitat for Humanity Building Project Manager Paul Austin explained how the group plans to build three two-story homes of about 1,200-square feet, subdividing the lot into three separate housing parcels.
The trust voted, 7-0, to authorize a purchase-and-sales agreement with Northern Berkshire Habitat for Humanity, the only respondent to the request for proposal the trustees issued on lots it purchased on Summer Street and at the corner of Cole Avenue and Maple Street.
The Affordable Housing Trust last week received one response for its request for proposals to develop a couple of building lots.
But at its Wednesday meeting, the trust's board held off on committing to the respondent.
The Affordable Housing Trust is working toward creation of a pilot program to help renters.
Two years ago, it launched a mortgage assistance program for first-time homebuyers that saw considerable initial interest. Since then, the trustees have heard about a need in the community for a program to help apartment dwellers move to and stay in town.
The board of the town's Affordable Housing Trust last week discussed its options for developing a pair of residential building lots it acquired in spring 2015.
The trust purchased the properties on Summer Street and Cole Avenue with the intention of developing each into owner-occupied subsidized housing.
The Community Preservation Committee has recommended that town meeting fund six projects to the tune of $154,421.
The committee at its Feb. 23 meeting voted to send just six of nine active applications for Community Preservation Act funds to May's annual town meeting.