For immediate release
For more information contact:
Rhonda Rosenberg, Director of Communications
King County Housing Authority
Construction begins on new after-school facilities at Hidden Village and Spiritwood in Bellevue
Project will allow expansion of after-school education and recreational services to children living in low-income housing communities
Construction to substantially expand after-school facilities at two federally assisted housing communities gets underway this week. These popular programs help low-income youth at Hidden Village and Spiritwood Manor to succeed in school.
“This initiative significantly expands our partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Bellevue,” said Stephen Norman, executive director of the King County Housing Authority. KCHA owns and manages both complexes and is developing the two centers. “By providing access to high-quality after-school programs, programs coordinated with the Bellevue School District, we are providing very necessary resources to help kids with their futures and economic prospects. A healthy regional economy depends on our ability to give every child the skills that will prepare them to successfully contribute in the marketplace.”
KCHA will replace the two existing undersized and outdated facilities with larger, energy-efficient centers with classrooms, computer labs, multipurpose activity areas and art rooms. Both centers will include kitchens providing after-school snacks and meals. The $2 million initiative is being funded from property revenues and the Authority’s internal resources. The Boys & Girls Clubs of Bellevue will provide academic, recreational, leadership and healthy lifestyles programs when the “Clubhouses” re-open.
“We’re excited to be able to increase the educational and recreational opportunities for the kids living at these complexes,” said Boys & Girls Clubs of Bellevue President/CEO Kathy Haggart. “These new Clubhouses are a tremendous investment in our youth and we appreciate the support we receive from KCHA. They have been a great partner with the Club for over 15 years, ensuring that our kids have access to every resource available for them to succeed.”
“With this expansion, the King County Housing Authority affirms its commitment to supporting the success of families living in assisted housing at these locations,” said Bill Henningsgaard, executive director of Eastside Pathways. “We applaud both the Housing Authority and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Bellevue for their innovative partnership which makes this possible.” Eastside Pathways works a variety of partner organizations in Bellevue to support children, step by step, from cradle to career.
The new centers were designed by Tonkin Hoyne Architecture and Urban Design. The current Hidden Village facility, which serves about 60 children, will be expanded to 4,646 square feet of program space. The Spiritwood Manor facility, which serves about 50 youngsters, will be expanded to 3,125 square feet, tripling the current program space. Both facilities are designed to incorporate Evergreen Sustainability Standards with features such as energy-efficient windows and heat pumps, 50-year roofs and siding, and rain gardens for storm water control. The buildings have also been designed to accommodate a generator that can provide limited heat and electricity in the event of an emergency. In addition, kids at Hidden Village will work with local artist Kristen Tollefson to create a community art installation for the new building.
Construction, which will be overseen by the King County Housing Authority, will be completed by spring 2013. Stetz Construction is the general contractor. The project is expected to employ approximately 50 workers and generate additional economic activity in Bellevue.
A recent study by the Econsult Corporation measuring the impact of construction work on assisted housing sites nationally found that every construction dollar spent generated $2.12 in additional economic activity through wages, purchases of goods and services, and consumer spending by workers.
This project is part of a broader initiative by the Housing Authority to build or expand youth facilities at seven Housing Authority properties. When complete, KCHA will have 17 after-school centers, operated in partnership with nonprofit providers and school districts, serving low-income households across King County.
Hidden Village is a 78-unit family complex located at 14508 SE 24th St. Spiritwood Manor is a 130-unit family complex located at 1424 148th Ave. SE.
KCHA administers a range of quality affordable rental and homeownership programs in the Puget Sound region. The Authority houses more than 14,000 children on a daily basis.