An official unveiling ceremony was held in Monett on April 26. Representatives from Rural Development presented Hamilton Properties with an official commendation for the undertaking.
Improvements were made on the Colonial Village Apartments in the 300 block of West Pine Street. The buildings received a complete overhaul, interior and exterior, and the grounds received new landscaping.
Pam England, housing program section chief who works out of Rural Development's Columbia office, commended Hamilton for taking a proactive position in dealing with 30-year-old buildings. She called the renovation "a partnership."
"I'd be proud to live here," England added.
Douglas Hamilton, construction manager for Hamilton Properties, credited Rural Development's Multi-Family Preservation and Revitalization (MPR) program for making the renovations possible. MPR allows for restructuring of selected existing rural rental housing loans so that facilities remain available and affordable to eligible residents for the next 20 years.
Hamilton was the first limited profit company to use MPR, rather than a not-for-profit. Hamilton worked with Rural Development to develop guidelines for businesses of its type, said Steve Cheatum, area specialist with Rural Development.
Murdock Contracting was the principal contractor on the project. Two of the tenants left at the beginning of the renovations, opening units where tenants were able to go while their apartments underwent renovations. The apartments are now fully occupied.
Connie West, complaintant supervisor for Hamilton Properties, extended thanks to the tenants for their patience during the renovations.
Representatives for Missouri's two U.S. senators and Seventh District Congressman Billy Long attended the ceremony.
"The federal money at work here through this agency proves itself to be very helpful to the communities they serve," said David Rauch, representative for Senator McCaskill. "We're glad to have a partnership that's effective and useful to communities."
"This is a good example of how a program should work," said Steve McIntosh, representative for Senator Blunt.
"A project like this also pays for upgrading utilities and appliances, making them more energy efficient," said Bob Kollmeier, representative for Congressman Long. "It keeps apartments affordable and works for everybody."
Following the presentation, those present visited several apartment units to see the work first-hand. Apartments had new doors and windows, cabinets and countertops, bathroom fixtures and refinished trim. The office and laundry room received new flooring, paint and heating and cooling systems. Exterior work included newly wrapped soffits and fascia, shutters, exterior lights and a resealed parking lot.
"All families should be able to find decent, safe and affordable housing," said Janie Dunning, Rural Development state director.