Barbara’s Place Serving Special Needs for Community


med_BarbarasPlaceBarbara’s Place Apartments, a new, permanent supportive housing project in Redmond is nearing completion and will begin fulfilling its purpose this month when it welcomes the first round of residents.

The complex was partially funded by the State Department of Human Services, who helped acquire the site and Housing Works, the Central Oregon regional housing authority

which will become the ownership entity once construction is done.   It will serve special needs clients of Mental Health Services and those who are homeless.  There are certain income and situational requirements that must be met and the rents will be subsidized by Oregon Housing and Community Service.

The smell of fresh paint and wood permeated the hallways as a hive of activity hustled to meet deadlines.

John Lester’s CS Construction is the contractor on duty through the build and discussed the quality of design seen throughout the apartment community.   “From our end we have a predetermined date of occupancy we’re pushing for, which is November 10,” said Lester.  “The project is all Earth Advantage, using green building guidelines that utilize renewable resources for the wood, high-end R49 insulation, Energy Star appliances and low wattage light bulbs.  The landscaping is very low-maintenance and we gave her a 40-year roof and a high efficiency gas water heater.  All the best stuff.”

The structure’s basic footprint is 3,900 square feet and the second floor comes in right at 1,500.  There are six self-contained apartments with complete living quarters including full kitchens, washer and dryer, bathroom, living room and a single bedroom.  Each unit measures approximately 700 square feet.

Peter Baer and Doug Alley of Pinnacle Architecture in Bend provided the efficient design work.  
“I think it fits in well with the neighborhood and looks nice from the street,” remarked Baer.  “It was drawn up for the special needs of the individuals who will live there.  There’s privacy from the street and some common areas for them to enjoy.  One of the key points was that it was Earth Advantage compliant and able to achieve that certification.  CS Construction has done a fantastic job and was great to work with.”   

“We kept some of the mature trees to provide shade during the summer,” Alley added.  “It was a tight site but we organized the space to maximize the scale and appearance of the building.”

Keith Wooden is the director of development for Housing Works in Redmond and explained the philosophy behind the facility and its eventual management.   “This is the fourth supportive housing project we’ve put together,” he said.  “There’s two in Bend and another in Prineville.  Not many of these prime units are available.   They’re all basically grant funded.  We try to create a very “market rate” property designed with efficiency in mind.   Pinnacle Architecture was the architect for Barbara’s Place and we’re extremely excited about the results. The rents are what pays for all the maintenance and common utilities. There was an initial capital advance issued but the property has to operate freely and independently.”

Staff members from Deschutes County Health Services will eventually be on site in addition to a part-time property management agent.   Prospective applicants can stop by for information, get screened and placed on a waiting list.

“One of the six units is ADA compliant with extra grab bars in the bathroom, lower counter heights and operating handles for cabinets and appliances,” Lester indicated on a grand tour throughout the apartments.  “The others are all ADA adaptable.”

The high ceiling design and warm wall colors makes for a comfortable, modern feel, well lit and bright.

“We have to recycle everything on site including cardboard, wood and plastics,” said Lester.  “We’ve got a full crew in here now, electricians, cabinet installers, painters  and an HVAC team for the heating and air conditioning work, all pushing for our deadline in the trim-out phase.  They’re doing an excellent job.”

“All people who move in will be existing clients with Deschutes County Mental Health Services or referred here,” said Wooden.  “It’s permanent housing so once they’re in, as long as they meet the requirements of the lease, they can stay as long as they wish.   We’ll have a cozy community room with a stone fireplace, widescreen TV and a computer room with two workstations to use.   Our goal is to provide dignity through housing and build something residents can feel proud of and call home.”

For questions or more information on Barbara’s Place please contact Keith Wooden with Housing Works at 541-323-7412.


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