161 Austin Street, Worcester, MA 01609

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161 Austin Street was foreclosure property acquired by Worcester Common Ground (WCG) during the housing crisis, which was rehabilitated using NSP and CDBG funds. Completed in 2010, 161 Austin’s rehab was unusual for WCG, due both to the building’s distinct architectural properties and the flexibility of the funding, which allowed for rapid turnaround of this stand-alone, single-property project. Because the organization was not obligated to package a number of properties (generally, funders require a minimum of 20 units to invest in a project), WCG was able to identify funding, purchase and rehabilitate in just under two years. While a triple-decker, the house doesn’t conform to the style commonly associated with these types of homes; 161’s sloped third floor is unique amongst WCG’s portfolio of flat-roofed, three-family properties. The identification of a First Time Homebuyer was also relatively quick, and homeowner Jeffrey Ortiz has since become an integral part of WCG’s governance, serving on the board and chairing the organization’s Community Committee.

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Worcester Common Ground, Inc.
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