Massachusetts Housing and Shelter Alliance (MHSA) and Bay Cove Human Services recently held a ribbon cutting for the newly-renovated Chelsea Commons, formerly known as Chelsea Community Center. The structure itself has a long history of serving the community of Chelsea in various capacities. From its beginnings as a YMCA housing veterans who had returned from the first world war, to its later iterations facilitating after-school programs for local kids, Chelsea Commons has always served as a welcoming place.
Today, the building is a safe and hospitable home for men who had previously experienced homelessness. Chelsea Commons offers 52 units of permanent supportive housing (PSH), managed by MHSA, with on-site supportive services provided by Bay Cove Human Services. The recent renovation by Chelsea Commons’ property owner Jim D’Amico of Century 21 added seven studio units, two updated shared kitchens, laundry access, a reception and lobby area, security system, plus a second office for staff offering supportive services and wraparound care for tenants.
“[MHSA and Bay Cove] are doing a great job managing the tenants, and we’re managing the property with [their] guidance. Things they think would be helpful for the building, we’re trying to provide,” said Jim D’Amico of the renovation.
“Here, I’ve had a place to be, a roof over my head, people to talk to and case workers [who have] helped me. The people who work here, they’ve been good to me. I’ve enjoyed it. I’d recommend this to anybody. The program’s been excellent,” said one tenant of Chelsea Commons who had previously experienced homelessness and had lived in emergency shelters.
More than 50 people attended the ribbon cutting on January 26th, including President of Chelsea City Council Leo Robinson, Director of Chelsea Housing and Community Development Alex Train, Jim D’Amico, Chief Operating Officer of Bay Cove Human Services Carley Lubarsky, MHSA President and Executive Director Joe Finn, Community Engagement Specialist for the Chelsea Police Department Dan Cortez, Chelsea Chief of Police Keith Houghton, and Chelsea Fire Chief Leonard Albanese, as well as tenants and staff from both Bay Cove Human Services and MHSA, and staff from partnering service provider agencies in the community.
Check back soon for a video tour of Chelsea Commons!