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Tewksbury Habitat Build Project Moves Forward, With Help From Selectmen

Mar 02, 2015 08:56PM ● By Bill Gilman

This home at 110 State St., Tewksbury will be demolished and replaced with a Habitat for Humanity Home.

If the weather will cooperate, ground will be broken on the first Tewksbury Habitat for Humanity project some time in April.
According to Brenda Gould, Executive Director Habitat for Humanity of Greater Lowell (HHGL), local developer and philanthropist Marc Ginsburg has volunteered to demolish the existing structure at 110 State St., which will be replaced by a ranch-style home.
One of the final pieces fell into place last week when the Board of Selectmen approved a request from Gould, for a $25,000 grant from the Affordable Housing Partnership Trust Fund.
The grant raises the town's total cash contribution for the project to $75,000. The other $50,000 came from the same trust fund and was transferred into the general fund to pay the back taxes owed on the property. In addition, the town had donated the property itself to HHGL.
"Yes, $75,000 is on the high side for a community (to contribute," said Gould. "We also say that Habitat for Humanity provides a hand up, not a handout. But in my position, i do always have to have my hand out."
According to Gould, the family chosen to take ownership of the home is a single mother and her three children presently living in Lowell. The mother is looking for work in Tewksbury, said Gould.
"It's a wonderful family," said Gould. "The mother is a terrific lady. We will be making the formal announcement and introduction of the family soon."
Contributions toward the project include a $50,000 pledge from the Tewksbury Congregational Church, $50,000 from the Dancing With the Realtors fundraiser, a $28,000 FHLB award, a $10,000 Shop 2012 net grant and $52,300 in donated construction materials.
While final numbers are not yet available, Gould said she anticipates the mortgage for the family will be kept to around $160,000. That mortgage would be paid directly to HHGL over 30 or 40 years. 
But the biggest part of any Habitat for Humanity project is always the community participation. Organizational meetings hosted by the Tewksbury Congregational Church have attracted scores of residents willing to volunteer their labor, supplies and services. The family receiving the home will also be active participants in its construction, putting in what is referred to as "sweat equity."

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