A Four Phase Housing Development in Danbury Begins to Open Doors and Provides New Supportive Housing Units
As a member of the Mayor’s Homeless Taskforce, Danbury developer Bob Botelho of Victorian Associates LLC could have been content with the significant contributions he made to help develop Danbury’s Ten-Year Plan to End Homelessness. Instead, the experience motivated him to “step up to do what I could to address the needs we identified.” Botelho’s decision to put his efforts- and his own funds- to work resulted in a proposal for a Four Phase Housing Development Called Victorian Meadows. The development is located on Osborne Street near Danbury Hospital and central to many local services.
Phase 1 comprises four supportive housing units consisting of four three-bedroom units. Phase 2 will consist of up to sixteen units in two buildings and will be a mix of market-rate and affordable units. Phase 3 will consist of one-, two- and three- bedroom units. Phase 4 will involve the construction of three-bedroom townhouses.
Botelho developed the units with financing from Union Savings Bank headquartered in Danbury. Supportive services are provided to residents by the Mental Health Association of Connecticut (MHAC), a non-profit organization with a long history of providing residential services for persons with mental health needs. HMAC case workers assist residents develop self-sufficiency through access to needed counseling, employment, training and medical services.
Danbury Housing Partnership Chair Mark J. Nolan hailed the completion of the units, noting “The provision of supportive housing opportunities is a key element of Danbury’s plan to prevent and end homelessness in the community. It’s inspiring to see someone like Bob put his beliefs into action in such a tangible way.”
Victorian Meadows was approved by the City of Danbury under its Affordable Housing Incentive Option, which provides that a percentage of the units developed be reserved as affordable. The project was approved for a total of thirty-six units and will be completed in a total of four phases.
Botelho worked closely with City officials to design the project to best suit the intended use of the property and the character of the surrounding neighborhood. Botelho has also met with Housing Partnership members and Danbury’s Veterans Housing Workgroup to discuss providing affordable rental units to veterans, families and persons in need of handicapped-accessible units. Botelho praised the input and cooperation of the City, MHAC, Union Savings Bank and other community organizations as the project made its way through the development process.
“It was great to have people support the project and enable us to create something worthwhile and lasting,” Botelho stated. “We’re only here a short while and I was fortunate to be in a position where I could build something to help people that the community could be proud of.”
Thanks to Botelho’s efforts, the plan to address homelessness he helped draft is now one step closer to being successfully implemented.