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FHLBank Boston awards BankNewport $850K grant to support construction of 54 affordable apartments in R.I.


PROVIDENCE – BankNewport recently received an $850,000 grant from the Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston, which it will use to provide construction financing for affordable apartments

in Portsmouth.


The grant is part of an overall $37 million in grants, loans and interest- rate subsidies from FHLBank Boston to support 29 affordable housing initiatives in New England and beyond, according to a news release.


BankNewport has partnered with the Church Community Housing Corp. to construct 54 affordable apartments for adults aged 55 and older, along with a new 3,000-square-foot senior center with thrift shop and office spaces, on the site of the Anne Hutchinson School.


Portsmouth is partnering with CCHC to build new housing, create new recreation space, preserve the historic school and replace the local senior center, which was closed in 2021 due to fire code issues.


The new three-story building will be named in honor

of Portsmouth artist and CCHC founder Ada Bethune. It will include 40 one-bedroom and 14 two-bedroom apartments and target households earning from 30% to 80% AMI. All apartments and common areas will be designed to be fully accessible, according to FHLBank Boston, and the structure will be built to Passive House and Energy Star rating standards to ensure long-term livability and energy efficiency.


The new housing and senior center will replace the baseball field and a 1951-era school addition while preserving the original historic 1928 school structure, according to FHLBank Boston. The recreation space, replacing the baseball field, will be leased back to the town.


“Partnering with our members to support the creation and preservation of affordable housing is an integral part of our mission,” FHLBank

Boston CEO and President Timothy J. Barrett said in a statement. “As

we heard from a large number of stakeholders in recent months, they


greatly value the positive impact our Affordable Housing Program has had in their communities. We are pleased that this year we were able to support initiatives that will create stable and secure housing for individuals and families, including seniors, people with disabilities, and those at risk of homelessness, in a variety of communities throughout New England.”


Member financial institutions work with local developers to apply for funding, which will be used to help pay construction, acquisition, or rehabilitation costs and is awarded through a competitive scoring process.


The housing projects are expected to create or preserve 1,096 rental and homeownership units for individuals and families earning up to 80% of the area median income, according to the release.


FHLBank Boston awards BankNewport $850K grant to support construction of 54 affordable apartments in R.I. (pbn.com)