Retired Staff Sgt. Conseulo Brown proudly shows off her new, furnished home. “I never thought this day would come,” said Brown. “This is above and beyond what I expected.”
On Friday, Feb. 26, Brown and several other veterans joined Mayor Megan Barry, state commissioners and officials from Buffalo Valley Inc., the Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency (MDHA) and the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for the grand opening celebration of Patriot Place, an affordable housing community for homeless veterans. Located at 314 Williams Avenue in Madison, Patriot Place is made up of 34 one-bedroom apartments.
“This project brings together two issues that are extremely important to me: Taking care of our veterans and offering more housing options throughout Nashville,” said Mayor Barry. “It’s critical that we look after the men and women who have given and sacrificed so much for our country. Thank you to HUD, MDHA and Buffalo Valley for making our community stronger and making our veterans’ lives better with the opportunities they’re providing here.”
MDHA provided nearly $2.3 million in HOME funding for the $2.8 million project developed by Buffalo Valley. MDHA administers these funds, awarded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), on behalf of the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County. Buffalo Valley also received a $426,101 grant from Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati and a $100,000 grant from the Home Depot Foundation.
In addition, MDHA secured 32 Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) vouchers for the men and women who will soon call Patriot Place home.
“Today we are serving the men and women who have served our great country. As a retired Marine, I am honored to be involved in such a noble project,” said retired Col. Jim Harbison, MDHA executive director. “To my fellow veterans who are here today, thank you for your service. You deserve this.”
Buffalo Valley will own and operate Patriot Place, which is made up of three apartment buildings and a fourth building, which will serve as the management office and a meeting space for veterans. It is also located along a public transit bus route that includes the Veterans Affairs Hospital and other supportive services.
“It’s important that we remember the sacrifices veterans have made for our freedom,” said retired Capt. Jerry Risner, Buffalo Valley executive director. “This project is personal to me and my staff, and we are excited about those it will benefit.”
Brown is also excited and grateful for her new home, which she plans to move into this month.
“Today, a lot of people talked about saying thank you for your service,” said Brown. “Now it’s my turn to say thank you for your service to all of the people that helped me get to where I am today.”