Topics: Housing and homelessness

ORLEANS – The Housing Assistance Corporation has asked the town to contribute $1,876,624 toward the development of 14 rental units at the former Masonic Lodge at 107 Main St. Town officials are more than willing to do that, but a disagreement has developed over exactly where the money should come from. HAC needs a commitment from the town for the subsidy amount to apply for a $1.5 million state grant as well a...

ORLEANS -- Outside Nauset Middle School on Aug. 26, backpacks sat in orderly rows on the grass waiting to be picked up, each one specially packed up for individual students across different grade levels.  The Homeless Prevention Council has so far provided backpacks full of school supplies for approximately 285 students for the upcoming 2021-2022 school year through its annual Backpack to School program. Now i...

ORLEANS - In an effort to expedite a plan for the future use of the Governor Prence Inn, a new planning committee will help steer the town through potential options for the property on Route 6A. An outline of the committee’s work, as well as a timetable for identifying a recommended use for the inn, was presented during a joint hearing of the select board and the affordable housing trust board Aug. 18. The ...

ORLEANS - The town is ready to partner with Housing Assistance Corporation to bring affordable housing to the site of the former Masonic Lodge on Main Street. But how it comes up with its share of the money to do so has yet to be decided.  The affordable housing trust fund board voted 8-0 Aug. 17 to accept Town Administrator John Kelly’s recommendation that the town partner with the Hyannis-based nonprofit to ...

ORLEANS - Neal Ahern put the question plainly to George Meservey, the town’s director of planning and community development, Aug. 4. How long will it take before the Governor Prence Inn is again put to use? Speaking during a joint meeting of the select board and the affordable housing trust board, Meservey said it would be a minimum of two years before the inn, the purchase of which town meeting voters auth...

ORLEANS – A plan is in the works to convert the former Masonic Lodge on Main Street into affordable housing, but it would come at a cost to the town. The Housing Assistance Corporation has submitted a plan to the town's affordable trust fund board to build 20 bedrooms across 14 rental units at the site of the lodge at 107 Main St. The town is donating the land to the Hyannis nonprofit, which is also asking it ...

HARWICH — Jason Barbour and Judy Abbruzzese could be homeless on Friday. The couple has been bouncing around since May 11 when fire and heavy toxic smoke destroyed their home in Dennis. But time and the generosity of others are now running out. Having lost cherished belongings to the fire, along with their cat Bobo, they are facing the reality of the housing crisis on Cape Cod. They have been working with s...

HARWICH — The purchase last Thursday of 13 acres off Pleasant Lake Avenue and Queen Anne Road by the affordable housing trust could put a significant dent in the town's housing crisis. “I consider this a generational find,” said Selectman Donald Howell, chairman of the trust. “It’s on a major road, next to a highway and across from a bus station. It has most of what you want for affordable housing.” The trust ...

For the year so far, the median sale price of a single-family home in Chatham is $1,283,750, a nearly 75 percent jump from last year, when the median price was $735,500. In Orleans and Harwich, the figures are not as eye-popping, yet they still tell the story of a real estate market that's on fire. The median sale price of a house in Orleans for the year year is $977,000, a nearly 29 percent increase; in Harwi...

New Habitat Homes Honor Housing Advocate Bob Murray

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The walls that will support roofs over the heads of six families are scheduled to rise in the next month at Habitat for Humanity of Cape Cod's Murray Lane development in West Harwich. On Monday Habitat introduced the six families who, with sweat equity, will be living in the homes. The gratitude for Habitat's efforts was palpable during the project kick-off meeting. “It’s a dream for us, is this r...

HARWICH — The owners of the Chloe’s Path subdivision off Sisson Road are proposing to build 96 housing units on 8.14 acres to the rear of the town’s public safety facilities. Landowners Peter Donovan and Gary Terry and their consultants want to engage in a preliminary discussion with the selectmen about the scope of the project, the regulatory process and community outreach, said Attorney Andrew Singer. The...

PLEASANT LAKE — Cape Cod Regional Technical High School students have a history of helping Habitat for Humanity of Cape Cod, and now they’re looking to take the people who live in Habitat homes for a ride. A bicycle ride, that is. Students at the Pleasant Lake school are repairing and restoring bicycles to give to Habitat residents. The project is part of a SkillsUSA Week community service initiative the schoo...

CHATHAM — Calling it a great opportunity for the town, the select board threw its unanimous support behind a plan to purchase four parcels of land in South Chatham to build affordable and attainable housing. The proposal will be addressed by town meeting voters in June. The property at 2337 Main St. is in the area of the town-owned Bassett House visitor center, and owner Dennis Jordan has offered the land to t...

ORLEANS — The consensus of the zoning board of appeals is that Pennrose, LLC, deserves a comprehensive permit to proceed with its plan to convert the former Cape Cod 5 operations center into 62 units of affordable rental housing. A formal vote is expected April 7. Before coming to that view at the board’s March 17 meeting, members heard from some of the West Road site’s near neighbors, including residents of...

Conversion Of Royal To Apartments Approved By Plan Board

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The 26-unit Royal Apartments project was approved last week by the planning board over the objection of residents in the neighborhood who were concerned with density, traffic and parking issues that will be generated by the conversion of the assisted living facility to apartments. The proposed apartments would be located in the former Royal of Harwich assisted living facility at the corner of Bank an...

‘Mansion Tax’ Proposal Clears First Hurdle

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — A proposal to levy a fee of one-half of 1 percent on transfers of real estate over $2 million, using the proceeds to support affordable and attainable housing, is one step closer to going before voters for consideration. Colloquially dubbed a “mansion tax” by sponsor Select Board member Jeffrey Dykens, the measure requires final approval by selectmen and the endorsement of town meeting before it co...