CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – A former Chicopee school will soon serve as affordable housing for veterans who were once homeless.
Soldier On plans to turn the old Chapin School on Meadow Street in Willimansett into a housing complex. The facility will include several living units, along with veterans’ services.
John Downing, President of Soldier On told 22News that we owe it to veterans to provide them with a place to live.
“Everybody that is a veteran, everyone that has ever put on the American military uniform has said to you and me ‘I will die for you,’ and we don’t clearly hear that, and we thought if the people who have said ‘I will die for you’ and give us their life, should be able to own where they live which will stabilize their lives,” Downing said.
The plan is also a win for Chicopee; it will be the first time the building is on the tax rolls, and it will bring in an extra $30,000 a year in property taxes for the city.
Soldier On has facilities in Pittsfield and Northampton, and is planning on adding housing for veterans at the site of the former State Police Academy in Agawam.