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Amherst takes applications for affordable housing

The 42-unit Olympia Oaks, which broke ground last fall, is expected to be ready for occupancy in June.

HAPHousing Inc. of Springfield is overseeing the $8.7 million project, designed by Kuhn Riddle Architects of Amherst being built by Keith Construction of Canton.

People interested in being placed on the waiting list must earn below 60 percent of the area median income, which for a family of four means making no more than $49,140 a year.

Tenant rents are expected to be $878 for a one-bedroom home, $1,048 for a two-bedroom residence and $1,205 for a three-bedroom apartment. Heat and hot water are included in the rent.

The apartments will be in townhouses and triplexes around a common green that will feature a garden and playground.

Even with these new units, Nancy Gregg, the co-chairwoman of the town’s Housing and Sheltering Committee, said demand for affordable housing is outpacing supply.

Last year the town lost affordable units at Echo Village Apartments and Rolling Green Apartments, increasing the number of families who may be seeking alternative housing.

“We need a lot more, I’m pretty sure,” Gregg said.

Initial occupancy will be determined by lottery from qualified applications. Gregg said people who are already in the community either living or working will be given preference for some of the slots.

Rental applications and apartment floor plans are at haphousing.org. The deadline for applications is March 21.

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