Major upgrades planned for Paca House program for homeless veterans

Volunteers of America Chesapeake will soon begin $27 million in renovations to Paca House, which provides permanent housing in Baltimore to the homeless, including veterans.

The complex that opened in 1996 at 116-120 North Paca Street will begin conversion in May from 106 single rooms and efficiencies to 92 more modern efficiencies and one-bedroom apartments, with kitchens and bathrooms.

Volunteers of American said it will redevelop the property through a joint venture with Somerset Development LLC, a Washington, D.C.-based developer with a Baltimore office that focuses on urban revitalization projects. The Paca House upgrades will be financed through corporate and nonprofit grants, Volunteers of America Chesapeake funds, city community development funds and state low income housing funds and tax credits.

The program will continue to offer supportive services and add services offered at the nearby Veterans Affairs Medical Center and other providers.

Nineteen units will be reserved for homeless veterans and veterans will be given preference in 63 more units. Residents in good standing will not be displaced, though they will be relocated during construction, slated for completion in August 2019, according to Volunteers of American Chesapeake.

New residents will be referred by Veterans Affairs and city housing programs or Paca House outreach.

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