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The community room kitchen in the Marjorie Moore Village is renovated with ADA-compliant features like a cut-out under the sink so a wheelchair-bound person can use it. | (Daniel Jackson / The Berlin Citizen)

Elderly housing renovated

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The community room kitchen in the Marjorie Moore Village is renovated with ADA-compliant features like a cut-out under the sink so a wheelchair-bound person can use it. | (Daniel Jackson / The Berlin Citizen)

The renovation project of the Marjorie Moore Village is almost done, according to Joseph Bajorski, chairman of Berlin Housing Authority, despite delays with back-orders with the supplies.

“We should be done by the end of year,” he said.

Berlin’s housing authority installed a generator at the community room (in the event of some kind of storm) and is renovating all the kitchens and bathrooms in the 40-unit housing complex.

In September 2012, Governor Dannel Malloy announced the state gave Berlin $500,000 to renovate the village, designed for elderly and disabled residents.

The grant was part of a $11 million coffer the federal government gave the state of Connecticut under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Small Cities Community Development Block Grant program. Berlin was one of 31 Connecticut towns to receive money last year.

Bajorksi said the housing authority could not apply for the grant from the state by itself and needed the help of the town council.

“The council stepped up and approved the application,” he said.

The Marjorie Moore Village, operating at 100 percent capacity, was built in the 70s, and now, the units are getting an upgrade.

“They are going to better comply with the ADA in terms of accessibility and utility,” Bajorski said.

Ten years ago, the town’s capital needs assessment study identified areas in the village that needed change.

The renovations are just “executing suggestions in that report,” Bajorski said.

Mary Cunningham, housing manager, said the renovations have been a disruption for many of the residents of the village who have developed daily routines.

However, Cunningham said, “They’ve been good. They’ve been really good through all of this.”

The tenants are moved out of their units for 48 hours. In that time, the new cabinets are installed and a new bathroom completed. The little details are finished later, when the tenant returns.

Usually, the apartments are redone once a tenant leaves, Bajorksi said. That way, the housing authority can keep the flooring and the paint up to date. These renovations, however are full-blown.

The renovations give the residents more cabinet space, and a way to better regulate the temperature of the apartment.

A large generator sits outside the community room. Bajorski said the housing authority thought of installing a generator to power the whole village during a storm but “because of the design of the electrical systems here, it would be cost prohibitive.”

Instead, the community room would be a familiar place for the residents that would have heat, a place to store their medications during power outages.



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