For immediate release
For more information contact:
Rhonda Rosenberg, Director of Communications
King County Housing Authority
Sarah Villian, Communications Manager
253-835-7678 ext. 104
KCHA receives rental subsidies from HUD to house 33 homeless veterans in partnership with the Multi-Service Center (MSC)
New development will combine housing and supportive services for veterans and their famlies
— Federal Way
The King County Housing Authority has been awarded rental subsidies from HUD that will enable it to support 33 formerly homeless veterans at the Multi-Service Federal Way Veterans Project that will break ground next month. The vouchers, part of a recent award of 92 vouchers received by KCHA through the Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) program, will provide ongoing rental subsidies at the first supportive housing complex dedicated to homeless veterans south of Renton.
“These vouchers are an important boost in the effort to end homelessness among veterans in King County and across our state,” said Senator Patty Murray. “Each voucher represents a permanent home and essential supportive services for someone who served heroically, but is struggling to find stable housing. By providing our veterans with a roof over their heads and the services they need and deserve, they can start to rebuild their lives. I’m proud to work with the King County Housing Authority to fulfill our responsibility to support those who have sacrificed so much for our country, and I will continue to support this vital program that is moving us forward in our fight to end homelessness among veterans."
The VASH program combines permanent rental assistance with case management and clinical services provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Homeless veterans are referred into the Housing Authority by the local VA Medical Center and receive assistance from dedicated VA caseworkers in finding and maintaining their housing. Including this recent award, KCHA administers a total of 402 VASH vouchers for homeless and disabled vets.
“It should be unacceptable that there are veterans − men and women who have served their country – living on our streets,” said King County Housing Authority Executive Director Stephen Norman. “There is widespread support in the community for this program. We’re enormously grateful to Sen. Patty Murray for her commitment to ending homelessness among vulnerable, chronically homeless veterans and their families. These vouchers will make a huge impact.”
Located on Pacific Highway South near transportation and services including the Federal Way Vet Center, a library, shopping, health care facilities, and the MSC Federal Way Veterans Project will break ground this December, with the first residents moving into their apartments in late 2015. The new building, which is being co-developed by MSC and Shelter Resources, Inc., will include a total of 45 units and house both homeless individual veterans and veterans with families. Rents in the units subsidized through the VASH vouchers will be set at approximately 30 percent of household income.
“This is an incredible opportunity to give back to veterans and help meet the enormous need for affordable housing and complementary services that exists in South King County,” said Robin Corak, chief executive officer of MSC. “Additionally, I’m excited to be collaborating with so many great partners, all of whom are contributing an important piece to big picture that will mean stability and success for the veterans who will live here.”
Many homeless veterans suffer from physical ailments and/or mental distress, including post-traumatic stress disorder. The already difficult re-entry process for many veterans and their families is made worse by the lack of affordable housing. At the MSC Federal Way Veterans Project, veterans will receive an array of services linked to the VA Puget Sound Health Care System.
According to the 2014 One Night Count, South King County has the largest concentration of low-income veterans in King County.
“I believe we owe a debt to our brave service members, and I’m pleased that this this new supportive housing complex for veterans is located in our city,” said Federal Way Mayor Jim Ferrell. “This beautiful new facility will not only provide a great place to live, but will also help ease the range of challenges that these valiant men and women confront when they return from service.”
The $13 million apartment complex, designed by Baylis Architects, will consist of four stories with 22 one-bedroom units, eight two-bedroom units and three three-bedroom units. Apartments will be fully furnished and wired for Internet access and other amenities include a secure, staffed lobby and closed circuit TV monitoring systems.
In addition to the VASH vouchers, funding for the project comes from federal low-income housing tax credits, the King County Veterans and Human Services levy, the state Housing Trust Fund, the Federal Home Loan Bank – Seattle, and the Home Depot Foundation.
Attached is a rendering by Baylis Architects of the MSC Federal Way Veterans Project.
KCHA, an independent municipal corporation established under state law, assists more than 18,000 households in the suburban Seattle metropolitan region on a daily basis. The Authority administers rental housing assistance, develops and manages affordable housing and works closely with community stakeholders to address local priorities such as ending homelessness, improving educational outcomes for the region’s low-income youth and assuring that disabled and elderly households can live with dignity.
Multi-Service Center (MSC), a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization, helps strengthen communities throughout south King County. MSC offers people pathways out of poverty through support and resources in education, housing, energy assistance, food, and clothing. MSC also provides statewide advocacy for elderly and disabled residents of long-term care facilities.