75.6 F
Cruz Bay
Friday, February 26, 2021
Home News Local government VIHFA Buys Villa Morales, a St. Croix Landmark, For Homeless Housing

VIHFA Buys Villa Morales, a St. Croix Landmark, For Homeless Housing

Villa Morales property is now a two-story guesthouse

The Virgin Islands Housing Finance Authority recently finalized the purchase of the Villa Morales property on St. Croix with 2018 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds. A total of $600,000 was allocated for the acquisition, architectural services and rehabilitation. The facility will provide up to 20 emergency shelter beds, transitional housing, and permanent supportive housing for the homeless, according to VIHFA.

“We’re excited about the acquisition of the Villa Morales property, which will provide shelter for the homeless population on St. Croix,” said VIHFA Executive Director Daryl Griffith.

Villa Morales Restaurant outdoor dining area

“The Authority is committed to helping reduce homelessness throughout the territory. I co-chair the Virgin Islands Interagency Council on Homelessness, which was recently re-established by Governor Albert Bryan. I am happy to report back to the council that the facility will soon be open to house our most vulnerable. We will be able to transform this cultural landmark into a shelter that directly benefits the St. Croix community,” Griffith said.

The Authority will enter into a collaborative partnership with a non-profit, community-based organization to manage the facility and provide wrap-around services. A portion of the facility is projected to be in service in early 2020, following some minor rehabilitation to the property.

(L to R) Tamisha Thomas, CDBG program manager; Flavia Logie, HFA legal counsel; JT Torres, Angela Morales; and HFA Executive Director Griffith

The property, formerly known as the Villa Morales Restaurant and Guesthouse, located at 82A, B and C Estate Whim, includes a single-family residence; one two-story guesthouse with eight efficiency housing units; one main restaurant building with a large dining area and adjacent outdoor decks; and a several outbuildings and storage areas. The property also has a vast area of vacant land prime for future development.

Closing the sale of the property has been in process for over a year. The acquisition is a part of the 2018 Community Development Block Grant cycle, administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) through the V.I. Housing Finance Authority.

The project was delivered on time in accordance with the Dec. 31, 2019 target date outlined in the action plan.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email




Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.



JOIN OUR MAILING LIST

STAY CONNECTED

20,265FansLike
4,124FollowersFollow

FROM FACEBOOK

Comments Box SVG iconsUsed for the like, share, comment, and reaction icons
Load more
Print Friendly, PDF & Email