2019: A Banner Year for the Trumbull Housing Authority.
This was quite a remarkable year for Stern Village. Over the past year, Stern Village has gone through a $6.8 million transformation, which was badly needed and had not been done for approximately 46 years. The goal was to rehabilitate, revitalize, and improve Stern Village, in order to provide safe and sanitary housing in addition to a better living experience for all our residents.
In 2013 we were deemed critical and at risk by the Connecticut Housing & Finance Authority (CHFA). Now, thanks to my persistent lobbying on behalf of our residents, and the support of the THA Board of Commissioners, First Selectman of Trumbull, Vicki Tesoro and the Trumbull Delegation, we are now sustainable.
This was accomplished by navigating the complex world of state financing. We obtained financing from a diverse group of agencies, including: $5.3 million funding from the State, $500,000 from 2018 State Housing Tax Contribution Program (HTCC), $800,000 from 2018 Small Cities Funding, and $200,000 from CHFA Critical Needs Funding. This does not include the 2019 Small Cities Funding or the 2019 HTCC Funding.
Our goals included:
- repaving our sidewalks and roads so that they were safe and drivable;
- significant improvements to property drainage and the sanitary system;
- improving energy efficiency and comfort through a combination of insulation, new water heaters, new doors, new windows, and heat pumps;
- structural changes to include several new porches, columns, gutters;
- mounting new shutters and mailboxes;
- installing radon mitigation systems throughout the Village;
- landscaping and tree removal, to continue in 2020;
- creating nineteen ADA units with large bathrooms, walk-in showers, ADA compliant cabinets, new lighting and new floors;
- rehabbing twenty-four units with walk-in showers, new cabinets, new floors, new lighting;
- constructing a new Community Room with an ADA compliant kitchen, ADA compliant bathroom, laundry room and more! (We hope to reopen the Community Room by the end of January 2020, beginning of February 2020);
- new signage throughout Stern Village in 2020;
- creating a rain garden by unit 51,
- painting the apartments in the Village in 2020,
- and more!
Henry Stern Center – Congregate
In addition to the much needed energy efficient upgrades made to the kitchen in the Congregate, a new generator and a new sprinkler system were installed. Power outage lights were placed in every congregants unit and additional outside lighting was installed to illuminate the path leading to the Congregate. New mailboxes have been ordered.
THA Congregate Kitchen received a score of 100% from the Trumbull Heath Department. We were the only eatery in Trumbull that received the highest score.
Additional upgrades will be made to the Congregate in 2020. These upgrades will include new energy efficient boilers, new heating/air conditioning systems, walk-in showers, higher toilets and more, to increase the safety and comfort of our frail and elderly residents. The sidewalk in front of the Congregate will be addressed in the spring of 2020.
However, we are not done. We need to extend the rehabilitation to all units and continue to make significant improvements to ensure the health and safety of our residents.
In 2018, we obtained a grant from TD Bank to be used for security cameras. We now have cameras focused on the 2nd circle and in front of the Congregate. Our goal is to have security cameras throughout our 16.19 acre parcel.
Every year we work with the Eagle Scouts on projects to benefit our residents. This year, Ben Cousins constructed a bus shelter by the Congregate. Our goal for next year is to ask the Eagle Scouts to build picnic tables.
We received a $1,000 donation in memory of a Stern Village resident. This will be used to create a gathering space/park by the Community Room.
Friends of the THA
We work closely with businesses who have donated their services and products to help our residents:
-Home Depot created community gardens for our residents and provided discounts on holiday blow-ups and decorations;
-Jeff Shapiro, of Creative Culinary hosted our THA Picnic and First Annual Winter Wonderland Party;
-Stop & Shop provides us with a variety of breads and pastries every Wednesday, and donates cakes to us when needed and Bruegger’s Bagels gives us bags of assorted bagels every Friday;
-Our goal is to work with other businesses to help support our needs and to provide more programs and events to bring our residents together.
For 2020, with the help of our residents, THA staff and THA commissioners, we will continue to make a positive impact on the Trumbull Housing Authority and work closely with the residents to achieve positive outcomes.
We are truly the Jewel of Trumbull.