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Mixed-Income Housing Complex To Open In Northampton, Mass.

The Live155 housing complex will open soon in Northampton, Mass.
Karen Brown
/
New England Public Radio
The Live155 housing complex will open soon in Northampton, Mass.

Seventy new apartments are coming to downtown Northampton, Massachusetts, as an experiment in affordable housing.

In 2015, the housing nonprofit Wayfinders bought a 40-year-old building called Northampton Lodging, where a few dozen people lived in low-cost, single rooms.

Wayfinders staff helped the residents move elsewhere so they could raze the building for a new complex.

Vice president Faith Williams said the new building, called Live155, is a combination of subsidized and market rate apartments -- in part to reduce the stigma of affordable housing.

"A lot of folks who want to live downtown -- there's not a lot of downtown housing -- have been watching this go up, and have been excited about it, and haven't identified it necessarily as affordable housing," Williams said.

Residents who moved out of the original building are invited to return, but Williams says most probably won't. She says about half the units will be rented when the building opens in the next couple weeks.

The bottom floor is reserved for shops and offices, but so far, none have leased the space.

Karen is a radio and print journalist who focuses on health care, mental health, children’s issues, and other topics about the human condition. She has been a full-time radio reporter for NEPM since 1998. Her features and documentaries have won a number of national awards, including the National Edward R. Murrow Award, Public Radio News Directors, Inc. (PRNDI) Award, Third Coast Audio Festival Award, and the Daniel Schorr Journalism Prize.
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