Abandoned buildings get refurbished future

CLINTON, Ind. (WTHI) – From desertion, to demolition, to the next big thing.

Remember these old Clinton buildings? Long abandoned and forgotten?

“The growth here was so bad, you couldn’t even see the front of the building. We went through the building, there was just a path. You couldn’t see the walls at all,” said Mayor Jack Gilfoy, Clinton. “This building had been dilapidated. Didn’t have anything in it but junk stored in it for years. We went in and took forty full dumpsters out of here of just trash.”

Now, they’re two new apartment buildings, one on the south side, one on the north.

Both considered an “affordable housing community” or Section 42.

“It’s a tax-credit program. It’s just for middle-of-the-road income people. For people on social security, pensions, disability, it makes a nice place affordable to live,” said Kirsten Hudson, property manager. “You deserve a nice place to live… Why rent ordinary when you can have extraordinary?”

So why Clinton?

“Especially Vermillion County, I know, has a very high unemployment rate so they pick communities where a property like this is needed,” said Hudson.

City officials say this is much-needed for residents. But it also brings money in in more ways than one.

“The taxes haven’t been paid on this since 1998. They will start paying taxes. The city will get sewer and water revenue from these facilities. So I think it’s just going to make a major impact on the city as a whole and that’s what we wanted,” said Mayor Gilfoy. “I think it’s going to draw people in. People come into town, spend money at our restaurants, service stations, car dealerships.”

Not entirely forgetting the history in these structures.

“All of the brick is original. The only reason we didn’t leave the exposed brick in the apartments is because of the insulation factor. We wanted to make them energy-efficient and green and make the utility bills affordable,” said Hudson. “We really tried to preserve as much of it as they could.”

But creating a new place for those deserving.

The apartment buildings also have solar panels on the roof.

Officials say this will help keep electric costs down.

The apartments on the south side are set to open in about two weeks.

The one on the north, October.

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