Homeward Bound Annual Report for 2019
This has been an important year for Homeward Bound and we are excited to share our updates. The Board of Trustees entered 2019 with mostly new board members and a sobering picture of how much work there was to be done on the Cherry Street Project. We also started off this year with fresh energy to approach these challenges. Looking back, we are proud of the progress that has been made, and we are ready to continue the important work of building a robust Community Land Trust.
Throughout this year we have built strategic relationships with respected professionals in order to forward the Cherry Street Project. In the beginning of the year, we asked Jesse Thomas, of Studio STL, to join the Board of Trustees, bringing his expertise in architecture design and connection to the local building community. Through Jesse’s involvement, we brought on Terrapin Architecture as the project’s new designer. Jesse and Terrapin worked to create an almost-entirely-new set of drawings for the Carmel Building. Terrapin Architecture has generously donated 25% of their services to forward the mission of permanently affordable housing.
In the spring we contracted David Sather, with Pacific Environmental Services, to build the first floor walls and foundation. The Carmel Building was secured onto this foundation on June 26th.
As we attempted to seek funding to cover the remaining cost of the project, it became clear that the original cost estimate was insufficient. Over the summer and fall we worked with Bob Little, of Little Consulting, who donated his time to draft a new cost estimate for the whole project. Bob’s estimate includes necessary renovations of the existing Carmel Building apartments that had not been included in the original estimate. We now have a professional estimate for the project’s remaining cost, with which we will be able to assess options for how to cover that cost.
In order to get the project to the construction phase more efficiently, we hired Heather Dudley-Nollette as our Pre-Construction Services Manager. Heather has also generously donated some of her time, in support of our mission. Once construction is under way, Bob Little will serve as the Owner’s Representative for Homeward Bound.
We believe that with this team of talented professional there is a viable path to success for the Cherry Street Project. Beyond the Carmel Building, we are working on a future concept for up to five additional units on the same piece of property, which means that the City’s donated property could contain up to fourteen permanently affordable units.
Our additional successes in 2019 were small but significant. Our Board of Trustees met twice per month for the entire year, forming a strong sense of purpose and momentum. Nearly all of those Board members will continue serving in 2020. We established a tiny office in Uptown Port Townsend, offered at a generously discounted rate by Wallyworks Construction. This tiny office grounds Homeward Bound in Jefferson County and will serve in our efforts to grow visibility in 2020.
The housing emergency is impacting the fabric of our community, from the workers in every industry who are struggling to find, or stay in, safe, adequate, affordable housing, to the businesses that are struggling to hire workers because qualified candidates cannot find a place to rent or buy. A CLT is uniquely able to challenge inflation by protecting housing stock from market forces, keeping homes and rents at permanently affordable rates, while allowing homeowners to gain a limited amount of equity. To make a sustained and meaningful impact on the affordable housing crisis on the Olympic Peninsula, we need a Community Land Trust. To that end, we are starting off 2020 ready to roll up our sleeves once again, this time with broader aims in mind. Our four areas of focus for the next year (or two!) are:
1) Capacity Building & Strategic Planning
– Secure multi-year funding for and hire an Executive Director for Homeward Bound
– Assess options for how to best serve both Jefferson and Clallam counties
2) Cherry Street
– Secure funding for the rest of the Carmel Building Renovation
– Create an application process for potential residents
– Begin plans for additional units on the Cherry Street property
3) Growing Visibility
– Increase communications with public and membership
– Build membership base Educate community on the role of a CLT
4) New Opportunities
– Seek new projects Create infrastructure to receive donated homes
Supporting Our Work
It is going to take a community to build a Community Land Trust.
We are currently seeking people-power in a few areas. If you want to volunteer in one of these ways, or another, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org!
– Our Board is seeking both a new Treasurer and a new Secretary.
– Our communications and fundraising efforts will need community members who want to be our advocates and ambassadors.
– Consider supporting permanently affordable housing by donating to Homeward Bound.
– Become a member, or renew your membership (if yours doesn’t renew automatically)
– As always, telling your friends about the Community Land Trust model, and Homeward Bound specifically, is one of the most important ways to help support our work.
Thank you for taking the time to learn about our progress. We are always open to your thoughts and questions at email@example.com.
Homeward Bound Board of Trustees
Regan Harrison, 2019 President
Paul Rice, 2019 Vice President
Mark Cooper, 2019 Treasurer
Justine Gonzalez-Berg, 2019 Secretary