The Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC), the state’s leading certifier of green residential and commercial construction, land developments and local governments, is pleased to announce that new affordable housing in St. Augustine for at-risk veterans will be certified FGBC “Florida Green.”
FGBC President Bill Kachman and FGBC President-Elect Ralph Locke were on hand Tuesday for a flag-raising ceremony at Patriot Place.
“We are excited to be part of this important project. Six one-bedroom residences for transitional veterans, built on a beautiful infill lot with an incredible live oak for them to sit and relax under,” noted Kachman. “To be involved with this project means so much knowing that Patriot Place will be able to house an at-risk or homeless veteran and possibly a few family members after everything they have done for our country.”
FGBC member Bill Lazar, executive director of the St. Johns Housing Partnership, said the project was more than three years in the making, including finding and purchasing an appropriate lot; securing financing for construction; and permitting and zoning regulations.
“For years, our local veteran’s office has struggled to help local veterans who need a one-bedroom apartment to remain living in St. Johns County,” said Bill Lazar said in a statement. “Our hope is that this unique partnership with Flagler Health+ will provide a level of case management and stability for our residents to get back on their feet.
Patriot Place will be administered by Flagler Health’s social health program, Care Connect+, which connects people with vital resources like stable housing, food pantries, counseling services and transportation.
The one-bedroom apartments will measure 630 square feet and each veteran will pay about 30% of market rate with the balance subsidized through the St. Johns Housing Partnership’s fundraising efforts. The first six occupants will be selected shortly, considering those who are most in need at the current time.
The total cost of the Patriot Place project, including the purchase of land, lot preparation, design and construction is $900,000. Ponte Vedra Beach-based MountainStar Capital purchased the land for $100,000 and donated it to the project.
“Our commitment to projects like Patriot Place goes well beyond development and investment. We have collaborated tirelessly with partners like Flagler Health+, St. Johns Housing Partnership and St. Johns County to make this affordable housing a reality for the most in need. Today is another step in our pledge to provide affordable housing and support of charitable causes,” said Chris Lazzara, co-founder and CEO of MountainStar Capital.
Ameris Bank, another partner, provided for construction costs.
Founded in 1996, the St. Johns County Housing Partnership has helped expand housing options for the greater community, not just to benefit veterans. To achieve that, the group brings together public and private sectors including investors on projects that create low- and moderate-income housing, rebuild neglected homes and revitalize neighborhoods in disadvantaged areas.
Going Green? In Florida you have a choice. Contact the Florida Green Building Coalition at email@example.com, visit www.floridagreenbuilding.org or call (407) 777-4914.
About the Florida Green Building Coalition
The Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC) is a nonprofit 501(C)3 Florida corporation founded in 2000 and dedicated to improving the built environment. Its mission is “to lead and promote sustainability with environmental, economic, and social benefits through regional education and certification programs.” FGBC certification programs are the only standards developed with climate specific criteria to address issues caused by Florida’s hot-humid environment and natural disasters. Currently, FGBC is the leading certifier of green projects in Florida. FGBC’s membership is comprised of individuals and businesses from all areas of the building industry, including research, design, materials, products, construction, inspection, marketing, finance, and public advocates. For more information about the FGBC “Florida Green” certification programs visit www.floridagreenbuilding.org.
Mike Bonts Public Relations