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Hobart City Hall

HOBART — A city panel has advanced a proposed $7.1 million bond issue to help fund the development of a new 75-unit apartment facility for low-income veterans.

The Economic Development Commission sent the matter to the City Council with a favorable recommendation. Councilman John Brezik said the council could act on bond in December.

Decisions associated with the debt come after the council in January indicated Hobart was willing to serve as a conduit to issue bonds for A Safe Haven’s $11 million facility planned for property at 7930 Iowa St. in the Silverstone area.

Hobart is not obligated to pay off the bonds. Funding generated by the project will be used to make bond payments.

In addition to the economic development bonds, the council also is considering a tax abatement request for the project.

A public hearing for the abatement will occur at the council’s Wednesday session, and the council could take final action on the matter following the hearing.

After the financing and abatement are finalized, preliminary work could take place during coming months to clear the land for the new building.

Brian Rowland, a cofounder of A Safe Haven, expects construction of the facility could begin in the spring.

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Brezik said A Safe Haven has long been pursuing an affordable apartment complex for veterans in Northwest Indiana.

Brezik said the organization had discussions with multiple area communities, but Hobart was the municipality that ultimately was able to help bring the project to fruition.

“I'm really, really proud of that,” he said.

Brezik said the facility is “very much needed” to assist veterans.

Veterans who are unable to live independently will receive a variety of services there. That will include assistance finding employment. A case manager from the Adam Benjamin Jr. clinic also will be available at the facility.

City officials have said A Safe Haven's site is within walking distance to a commercial area, which could be helpful if there are employment opportunities there. The location also is near a public transportation line.

Officials also believe the facility could attract more development in the Silverstone area.

“It's a tremendous project,” Brezik said.

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