Loveland, Colorado: The Edge provides housing services for those who served.

ARTICLE | May 10, 2017

The list of people and agencies to thank was spread among several speakers over an hour and a half Thursday at the ribbon-cutting ceremony of Loveland Housing Authority's latest permanent supportive housing project, The Edge. The 70-unit affordable housing apartment complex, with another more than 80 units planned for phase two of the project, houses 20 veterans in the more than $20 million development.

Initially, 10 units were reserved for previously homeless veterans, but the need was greater. Other residents who live in the complex include those who lost their homes in the 2013 floods and 2012 High Park fire or those who have reached their turn after being on the agency's waitlist.

The development at East 15th Street and Boyd Lake Avenue features a modern architectural look outside the units with modern amenities inside.

For some, the biggest draw of The Edge, aside from having a place to call home, is the support groups for veterans — getting to talk with and learn from others who have shared similar experiences.

Permanent supportive housing is a model Community Development Partnership Office administrator Alison Hade wants to see increase in Northern Colorado. "It's not transitional," she said. "People are not required to leave after a specific amount of time. They can stay in the housing as long as they desire," she said. And by definition, permanent supportive housing comes with services, Hade points out. Those services for homeless veterans are primarily administered by the Veterans Administration at The Edge. "It includes mental health care to foot care and everything in between," Hade said.

Executive Director of the Loveland Housing Authority Sam Betters told the crowd on Thursday that several variables motivated him, his staff and all their partners to complete The Edge — the 2,500-person Housing Authority waiting list was among them.

Every speaker at the event Thursday highlighted a common aspect about the housing development — it provides support and services to those who have done the same for their country.

"As long as we have a homeless veteran in this country, it's a shame on us," Mayor Cecil Gutierrez said.

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