A $6 million loan guarantee from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development will finance some much-needed projects in Gary.
The federal funds will pay for the rehabilitation of the Hudson Campbell Fitness Center downtown, renovation of the auditorium and athletic facilities at West Side High School, and the construction of a new fire station in the University Park area.
Gary's Station 5 used to be based at 4101 Washington Ave. in the University Park neighborhood, but it has been a "homeless" firehouse since 2012, when a contractor found asbestos. The station has since bounced around to different locations in Merrillville and Calumet Township.
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"We were simply thrilled to receive news of the loan guarantee," Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson said. "HUD has been an extremely supportive partner that understands what we are trying to do to revitalize the city. This loan will allow us to make some significant progress on projects that our residents have been asking for."
Community development block grants provide communities with a source of financing for economic development, housing rehabilitation and other large-scale projects.
U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky's office helped secure the grant.