Housing Development History
Our work began in the early 1990s as a result of citizens concerned about the pricing and condition of rental housing. Working in partnership with the City of Laconia, we identified three neighborhoods for revitalization. Starting modestly, Lakes Region Community Developers (LRCD) focused on rehabbing scattered site family housing. Thirty-two units in mostly duplexes were rehabbed and permanently preserved as affordable housing. An additional 10 units in two buildings brought the total to 42. With experience and access to greater financial tools, LRCD began larger-scale projects:
In 1994, residents of Laconia’s most run-down, crime-ridden neighborhood asked for help in redeveloping the area. Grossly substandard buildings in the Avery Hill neighborhood of Laconia were either demolished and rebuilt or completely renovated resulting in seven buildings containing 14 units of affordable family housing, green space, and a playground.
In 1997, we completed our Pine Hill project, completing gut rehabs of 18 family-sized units in nine buildings in the Pine Hill Neighborhood.
In 2001, our Laconia Neighborhoods Initiative continued work in the same greater hospital hill area. Nineteen units in seven buildings were completed, including the historic Batchelder Street School. Having sat vacant for decades, LRCD put the property back on the tax rolls and converted it to beautiful housing.
In 2004, we redeveloped the abandoned Vernitron factory site in Laconia. The factory building, which had become an eyesore at the gateway to downtown Laconia, was demolished and replaced with five attractive, Colonial-style buildings containing 18 new apartments for low- and moderate-income families, now called Millview. Additionally we removed many tons of contaminated soil that posed an imminent threat to the groundwater and nearby river.
In the fall of 2006, we completed renovation of the Mechanic School building in Lakeport. This building, like our Batchelder Street School building, offers four one-bedroom units and two two-bedroom units. The Mechanic School is an Energy Star® certified building. A six-panel solar electric system provides electricity for the building's common areas.
In the Fall of 2009, we completed the development of Pinecrest Apartments and Frances Court Manufactured Housing Park in Meredith. These represent another success in our work to create permanently affordable housing for working families, improve streetscapes, and revitalize neighborhoods. The project was completed in three phases, ranging from road work to relocating a former manufactured housing park to constructing 32 new permanently affordable apartments. Pinecrest is LEED certified and incorporates green building features and energy efficiencies including solar hot water systems for each building. Frances Court is a 13-unit manufactured housing park offering a mix of rental and homeownership units.
In late 2010, we completed Phase I of Lochmere Meadows Apartments on Route 3 in Tilton, consisting of 28 two-bedroom units in four buildings.
Two years later, in 2012, Lochmere Meadows became first affordable housing development in New Hampshire to install both a solar thermal water heating and solar photovoltaic system. The clean energy produced by the Lochmere Meadows solar energy installation will offset over 65,000 pounds per year of carbon dioxide pollution. This project was funded by the LRCD’s national partner, NeighborWorks® America, and by an affordable housing grant issued through the TD Charitable Foundation’s Housing for Everyone grant competition.
In 2012, we celebrated -- with our partner Eastern Lakes Region Housing Coalition -- Phase I of Harriman Hill, located off Route 109A in Wolfeboro. Harriman Hill's first phase consists of 24 one-, two- and three- bedroom apartments. Each apartment has EnergyStar appliances, including washer and dryer, refrigerator, stove, and dishwasher.
In June 2013, we celebrated the completion of Lochmere Meadows Phase II, which added 19 two-bedroom units to the development.
In June 2014, Harriman Hill's second phase, in Wolfeboro, was completed, adding 24 units, consisting of one-, two- and three- bedroom townhouse style apartments.
In early 2016 we installed a new EnergyStar® manufactured home at our Francis Court development in Meredith. Francis Court is a 13 unit affordable manufactured home park acquired and upgraded by LRCD in 2009. Now seven homes are owned and rented by LRCD. The remaining six are pads that are rented to home owners.
In July 2016 we completed River's Edge, a 32-unit, three-story, affordable housing apartment building located in downtown Laconia. Reflecting current demand for smaller apartments, it has 12 one-bedroom units and 20 two-bedroom units of permanently affordable housing. LRCD has used innovative green technologies in the construction of these units. The property has nearly 700 feet of river frontage and is near a foot-bridge that links to downtown Laconia. River's Edge is also now home to an Community Infant Daycare administered by Lakes Region Child Care Services and a HOMEteam office and classroom space.
In late 2016 we completed a 65 unit preservation project purchasing 40 units in Ashland and 25 units in Meredith. Were these units not preserved by LRCD they would have been at risk to be sold and converted to market-rate apartments leaving 119 people without homes. For the past two years, we have worked to assemble funding to bring these 65 preserved units up to our healthy housing standard to improve the quality of life for the low-income families who live there.
In July 2018 we completed Gilford Village Knolls III (GVK III). GVK III provides 24 affordable apartments for seniors in the heart of Gilford Village. This is the third phase of the Gilford Village Knolls campus, which was the vision of a local citizens group that formed in the 1980s to develop affordable housing for seniors in Gilford. GVK III is the first multi-family property in the State of New Hampshire to be constructed to the Passive House building standard.
We are proud of these award-winning community assets developed in partnership with their communities.