New 95 North

The 95 North Campaign

The campaign will consolidate three of COTS’ vital functions under one roof at 95 North Avenue by:

Rebuilding the Daystation, an easy access point and central space for homeless adults to connect with COTS’ services:IMG_8390
• Puts clients and case managers in same space for more holistic environment
• Gives the Daystation a permanent home following flood of July 2012

• Includes brand new:
     • Outdoor gathering space
     • Quiet rooms with beds
     • Washing machines
     • Computer room
     • Lunch kitchen
     • Showers

Creating 14 new units of affordable, service-enriched housing:
• Connects formerly homeless adults with permanently affordable apartments

• Colocates COTS-managed housing and administrative offices

• Eases challenges of area’s tight housing market4

Upgrading program space and enhancing services for families and
prevention outreach:

• Allows COTS to operate more efficiently and effectively
• Increases COTS’ ability to meet community needs

• Decreases COTS’ annual operating costs

Additional Project Benefits:
• Improves building’s ADA accessibility through installation of elevator
• Increases energy efficiency and reduces storm water runoffPie chart
• Restores building’s historic 19th century facade

Timeline:
Break ground fall 2015, complete construction fall 2016

Cost:
The overall project costs $6.85 million – and 66% is covered by Housing Vermont ($4.55 million). The COTS 95 North Campaign is for $2.3 million, which will help us take full advantage of this opportunity.

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Why we support COTS:

“I think the permanent location of the Daystation at 95 North Street is ABSOLUTELY the right move for COTS… I’ve thought so since the day they bought it! This facility is urgently needed in our community and will finally have a permanent home, located with the rest of COTS’ services for clients. Rita Markley and her staff have done so much to focus us on preventing homelessness and providing a safe space for families whose situation seems hopeless. Holly and I are proud to be supporters.”
– Bobby Miller, REM Development

“I serve on the COTS board for very simple Vanessa Torchia of Burlington, leaving Battery Park during the start of the 22nd annual COTS Walk on Sunday May 1, 2011.reasons. We know that individuals and families with the security of a roof over their heads, a place for their children to sleep safe and securely, a place to have a real meal and a place where the community of others exists, means that workers arrive on the job less burdened by life’s troubles and able to focus on their job. They make better employees, are likely to remain with a company and contribute to the collective good. COTS affords to those who are troubled and disadvantaged the fundamentals of human dignity.  Isn’t that, after all, what Vermonters want for each other?”
– Tom Torti, COTS Board Member & President of Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce

“We respect and admire COTS; innovative and solution-based focus in programming and strategic outlook on ending homelessness. It’s a wonderful privilege to support the work they are doing.”
– David Stiller, The Stiller Family Foundation

“It’s so basic, for people to need a place to live…  It’s hard to imagine life in which a warm roof over your head is not a given. It’s the first thing you need if you want to have a life.”
– Lois McClure, along with her late husband J. Warren McClure, helped build previous Daystation facility

How you can help:

“There is a lot of talent that doesn’t get to the world – the veteran battling demons, the 23 year-old mom ritatreading water, and the kindergartner already falling behind in school. This campaign is not about a building, but about what happens within it. With your help, our support can be the catalyst that changes the trajectories of people’s lives, helping them both aspire and achieve.”
Rita Markley, COTS Executive Director

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Frequently Asked Questions

What will be the impact of the new facility on the annual operating costs for COTS?
COTS expects a net cost savings with the new facility, including operating, maintenance, and financing costs. Project features include energy efficiency, facility upgrades, and colocation of programs at our 95 North Avenue facility.

What is the specific nature of the collaboration with Housing Vermont?
Founded in 1988, Housing Vermont is a nonprofit kidsyndication and development company that creates permanently affordable rental housing for Vermonters through partnerships with local organizations, public agencies and the private sector. COTS previously partnered with Housing Vermont on our successful Canal Street Veterans Housing. Through collaboration with Housing Vermont, this project is able to use “housing tax credits” to complete it. Housing tax credits reduce the federal taxes owed by an individual or corporation in exchange for his/her/its investment in low-income rental housing. To obtain the tax break, an investor provides the cash – called capital or equity in development terms – to help develop the project. The investor has no role in the development process or the management of the project after it is rented up. Housing Vermont’s successful partnerships has produced 4,950 affordable apartments in 159 developments.

How long would I have to pay my pledge?
You may take up to three years – 2015, 2016, 2017 – to fulfill your pledge to the campaign.

Is this project related to last year’s $1 million gift from the Hoehl family? How is that being used?
No, this project is not related to that gift. This generous gift was placed in a special board-designated reserve fund for future innovative programs to further COTS’ work in preventing homelessness in Vermont.

Isn’t 95 North an historic building? Has historic preservation
approved this project?

Yes, the building dates back to 1893 and phonathonwas the former location of Saiger’s and Colodny’s stores. The construction plan calls for a restoration of the historic façade of the building along North Avenue. All permits are in place, and we have the blessing of the historic preservation community.

What prompted the need for this project?
In July 2012, the COTS Daystation program was destroyed by a catastrophic flood. Since then, COTS has operated the program from temporary, interim locations. The Daystation (started in 1988) is designed to be a low-barrier entrance to services and community resources. A noontime meal is served daily to about 50 people.

What’s the total project cost? How big will the new building be?
Our overall project costs $6.85 million, with about two-thirds covered by Housing Vermont. The COTS 95 North Capital Campaign is for $2.3 million. The current building is 15,382 square feet; upon completion, the facility will be 23,830 square feet, which includes the Daystation addition and new apartments.

Are there more ways than CASH or CHECK to give a gift to this project?
Yes, you can contribute stocks, IRA distributions, bequest, certain in-kind gifts related to the construction and fit-up (e.g. commercial-grade, new Picture205furniture, carpeting, commercial-grade laundry machines, new mattresses or computers, etc.).

When will the building be ready? Will the campaign be completed by the time you break ground?
We expect to break ground this fall (2015) and complete the project by fall 2016. To take advantage of the opportunity with Housing Vermont, COTS needs to have the majority of our pledges in hand by December 2015. We are confident in our ability to raise the funds needed through our strong family of donors by this time.

Where will the COTS staff and services currently in the building go during construction?
COTS is in the process of securing temporary rental space to accommodate our staff and continue our services. The Daystation is temporarily located at 179 South Winooski Avenue until the new facility is completed.

Click here for a PDF version of this information!


Make your contribution to the 95 North Campaign here!

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Gifts can be sent to:

COTS
P.O. Box 1616
Burlington, Vermont 05402