Restoration Housing Completes Historic Rehabilitation of Circa 1890 Home

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The mission of Restoration Housing is to develop affordable rental properties for the benefit of limited-income families and individuals through the rehabilitation and preservation of historic architectural resources.

Restoration Housing announced today that they have completed the historic rehabilitation of their fourth home in Roanoke, a circa 1890 home that once belonged to one of Roanoke’s earliest mayors, Sylvester Siefert. Before beginning construction last Fall, the historic home had been vacant for several years and had suffered decades of deferred maintenance, leaving it in a heavily deteriorated state.

In the Spring of 2019, Restoration Housing received funding from DHCD (the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development) to assist with the construction costs for the project. This grant allowed the organization to finish the project with minimal debt, thereby ensuring that the rents could remain low.

Other construction sources were obtained through additional local foundations as well as through the use of Historic Tax Credits. 326 Dale Avenue will be one of the first projects to utilize historic tax credits in the newly nominated Belmont Historic District of Southeast Roanoke (which was created in late 2018).

“This house is similar to all of our previous rehabs in that it needed far more work than a typical home-owner or real estate investor could ever rationalize spending. As a nonprofit developer, we’re able to invest significantly more capital and bring this house back to life in a way that supersedes real estate markets and creates opportunity for our city’s most vulnerable populations. In order to get here, we’re incredibly thankful to all of our partners in this rehab effort- DHCD, ARCH Services, the Rescue Mission, Joy Sylvestor Johnson, and the City of Roanoke’s department of Human Services,” said Restoration Housing Executive Director Isabel Thornton.

Restoration Housing is partnering with ARCH Services to fill the four units of this grand Queen Anne home with previously homeless individuals. This form of housing is called “Permanent Supportive Housing” as these units are meant to be homes to the tenants indefinitely, not as transitional spaces. ARCH Services not only helps assist with rental stipends for the tenants but also provides the supportive services.

Acquired by Restoration Housing in 2018, this project will be the fourth rehabilitation overhaul for the nonprofit organization, which began in 2014, with two more projects in the pipeline just down the street in Southeast Roanoke. Their first two projects are located in the West End and are both used as affordable rental housing. The third project is the Villa Heights Rec Center, which is located in Northwest Roanoke and which provides affordable rental space for nonprofit organizations seeking to expand services in low to moderate income neighborhoods.

Roanoke contractor Square 1, which also completed the previous three projects, performed the renovation and Jeff Wood Designs completed architectural drawings. Each project of the organization uses historic tax credits to offset construction costs and keep rents affordable.

The organization will hold a small, socially-distanced ribbon cutting on November 17th at 9:00 am to celebrate the completion of construction. All press inquiries will be conducted outside and tours will be allowed with a maximum of five people in the house at any given time.