Spokane Journal of Business

Cd'A St. Vincent launches project for mentally disabled

$2.5 million apartment complex there to include total of 14 living units

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Coeur d'Alene-based St. Vincent de Paul North Idaho is developing 14-unit apartment complex north of the Lake City's downtown area to provide housing for people who are disabled due to chronic mental illness, says the project's designer.

The site for the $2.5 million project will be at 102 E. Homestead, about a block south of Interstate 90 and east of Government Way, says the architect, Tad Belefski, of Seattle-based Michael Fancher & Associates.

Contractors Northwest Inc., of Coeur d'Alene, is the contractor on the project, says Belefski, who adds that he expects the building's foundation will be poured soon.

The project, to be named John O'Brien House, is expected to be completed before summer, he says.

The three-story building will be erected with wood-frame construction and will have 13 one-bedroom units and one two-bedroom manager's unit, Belefski says. The one-bedroom units each will have about 550 square feet of living space, he says.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is aiding the project through its Section 811 program, says Sheryldene Rogers, the owner's representative and director of residential development for Spokane-based real estate brokerage Goodale & Barbieri Co.

The Section 811 program supports housing for people with disabilities through project funding and rental subsidies, Rogers says.

The Idaho Housing and Finance Association also has awarded some grant funds toward the project, she says.

"Stable housing will help tenants lead fairly normal lives," Rogers says. Tenants will be required to pass screening to show they have no criminal background and good rental histories, she says.

St. Vincent de Paul North Idaho will manage the property. John O'Brien House Ltd., a recently formed nonprofit, will own the building, and has leased the land it's being built on under a long-term contract with the city of Coeur d'Alene, Rogers says.

The late John O'Brien, the apartment building's namesake, had been a longtime board member of St. Vincent de Paul North Idaho, which is a chapter—or conference—of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, an international charitable organization run by Roman Catholic laymen and women. The conference is based in the Helping Empower Local People Center, at 202 E. Harrison, in Coeur d'Alene.

Mike McLean
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Deputy Editor Mike McLean has worked his entire journalism career in the Inland Northwest. Mike, who also lives to reel in fish and crank up music, has worked for the Journal since 2006.

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