New housing units to be unveiled today at Columbia Center

2012-07-25T21:39:00Z New housing units to be unveiled today at Columbia CenterBy Chelsea Schneider Kirk chelsea.schneider@nwi.com, (219) 933-3241 nwitimes.com

HAMMOND | The newest round of improvements at Columbia Center will be unveiled Wednesday as the Hammond Housing Authority continues to transform the 1940s-era complex.

The project, American Heartland Homes 2, involved constructing 40 new residential units and nine remodeled units at the affordable housing complex along 173rd Street.

The ribbon cutting ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday at 7404 Chestnut St.

“This is an extremely great step for housing in Hammond,” said Carmen Paniagua, Hammond Housing Authority executive director.

The housing authority is accepting applications for the one- to three-bedroom units. At least 24 of the units will be turned over to the housing authority by Monday with the remainder at the end of August.

Those upgrades follow three earlier phases of improvements, including 94 units as part of American Heartland Homes 1, 68 units in Saxony Townhomes at 175th Street and Chestnut Avenue and 80 senior units in Golden Manor at 175th Street and Columbia Avenue.

A final phase of the project may begin next year, with the planned construction of 108 new residential units at the center. The one- to two-bedroom units will be marketed to smaller households and seniors.

“We've seen that new construction works better than trying to rehab old units,” Paniagua said.

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