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News covering policy and issues related to city and county governments in the Ozarks.

City Council Approves Loan for Affordable Housing Project at Downtown Y

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YMCA
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Springfield City Council has approved a $700,000 loan through the city’s Commercial Loan Program for proposed renovations at the Ward Branch YMCA on Jefferson downtown.

The project would provide 48 housing units, with six to ten units set aside for foster care kids aging out of the system.  Debbie Hart is with Housing Plus, LLP, one of the developers who’s working with the Y on the project.

"I always tell people who say, 'why youth aging out of foster care?' and I say, 'imagine your own children at 19 without anybody to call,' and that's exactly where these youth are," she said.

Hart said she feels they’ve put together the right service providers to help the youth.

She said if they’re granted funds through the Missouri Housing Development Commission in December, they’ll use the loan from the city to help fund the project as well.

According to Hart, the Y would still be located in the building, but it would be “in a more efficient space” on the lower and first floors.

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