6 Water Street – Design Input

The Island Housing Trust engaged several architects to develop conceptual designs for a donated property in downtown Vineyard Haven on Water Street.   This past spring neighboring property owners and interested town residents were invited to share their thoughts regarding concerns, opportunities, and possible design/ program ideas for the property.

Dudley Cannada of Cannada Design Architects and James Weisman of Terrain Associates submitted two different conceptual designs in response to the Island Housing Trust’s request for proposal. Both proposals involve the removal of the existing house. The goal is to design a building or buildings that compliment the existing neighborhood and provides livable, energy efficient, affordable in-town rental housing with the possibility of street level commercial space.

Please email Philippe Jordi, Executive Director at pjordi@ihtmv.org to tell us:

1)  What specifically do you like about either or both of these conceptual designs, and

2)  What do you think can be done to improve either or both of these conceptual designs.


3)  Ask us any specific question(s) you have and we’ll try to answer them.

Your ideas and suggestions are greatly appreciated.  Thank you for your input in advance.






Community Investment Tax Credit grant award

Several months ago, the Island Housing Trust received certification from the state as a Community Development Corporation (CDC).    The state Department of Housing and Community Development announced today $750,000 in grants to CDC’s throughout the state, including a $25,000 grant to the Island Housing Trust at Community Investment Tax Credit  announcement.

These grant funds will be used by the Island Housing Trust to develop a community investment plan in preparation for an application for new Community Investment Tax Credits later this year.  A community investment plan is a strategic plan that looks at the local environment and its needs for affordable housing and community development activities and proposes ways to work collaboratively in the community to meet those needs.

The Island Housing Trust’s sees this as a wonderful opportunity to work with island towns, housing organizations, and the broader community to develop an implementation plan based on findings and recommendations of the recently released Martha’s Vineyard Housing Needs Assessment. We look forward to reaching out across the community to gather ideas and discuss ways that we can work together. With a community investment plan, we will be able to apply for additional state resources and to potentially attract a larger number of donors and investors to addressing the Island’s affordable housing needs.

Water Street – Design Meeting

All those interested in creating affordable rental opportunities in Vineyard Haven are invite to attend a meeting at 5:00 on Monday, May 13th at the Vineyard Housing Office located at 346 State Road in Vineyard Haven (behind the Tisbury Farm Market).

The purpose of the meeting to discuss design ideas for a property recently donated to the Island Housing Trust at 6 Water Street (between Stop and Shop and AA Island Auto Rental). We value your input as neighbors and members of our community.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact Philippe Jordi at 508-693-1117 or at pjordi@ihtmv.org

Island Housing Trust Certified CDC

The Island Housing Trust recently received certification as a community development corporation (CDC) from the state Department of Housing and Community Development.  CDCs are non-profit, community-based organizations that anchor capital locally through the development of residential and/or commercial property, ranging from affordable housing to local businesses. Similar to other CDCs, the Trust’s board composition includes a cross section of the island community including its homeowners, municipal government representatives, and the community-at-large members.   As part of its business plan, the Trust plans to apply to the state for Community Investment grant and Tax Credit funds. The Tax Credits will allow businesses and individuals to invest in the Trust’s plan to create and sustain permanently affordable homes island-wide.

“We’ll be working in partnership with island towns, other housing organizations, our homeowners and renters, and island residents over the next six months to develop a community investment plan that will address how we plan to create and steward affordable rental and homeownership opportunities for working island families and individuals over the next decade,” said Philippe Jordi, director of the Trust. “We’re excited about the possibility of local businesses and island residents personally investing in the Trust through this state tax credit program that we’ll be applying for later this year,” said Richard Leonard, president of the Trust.

In other news, the Trust also recently announced the addition of four new board members representing Trust homeowners at its annual board meeting, including: Elizabeth Loucks, Richard Jacobs, Sheetal Reubens, and Marc Schoenfeld.  Ms. Loucks is the Southeast Massachusetts land steward for The Nature Conservancy, Mr. Jacobs works for the Up Island Regional School District as the West Tisbury school custodian, Ms. Reubens works for the Town of Tisbury Department of Public Works as their administrative secretary, and Mr. Schoenfeld works for the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital as their facilities assistant.

At the annual meeting, treasurer Dan Seidman announced a record year for the organization thanks to growing public and private support of over $1.7 million in grants and donations, the sale of four homes and ground lease of six properties, lease fees from over 50 properties, and professional service fees – all part of the organization’s business plan to diversify its revenue sources.  As the leading non-profit developer of affordable housing on Martha’s Vineyard over the past eight years, Mr. Seidman points to the Trust’s strong partnerships with the island towns and banks, the Land Bank, Habitat for Humanity of Martha’s Vineyard and the Dukes County Regional Housing Authority, as well as a new collaboration with the Island Grown Initiative to develop farmworker housing at their recently acquired Thimble Farm property.

To download a copy of the organization’s annual report or to find out more about the Island Housing Trust, visit www.ihtmv.org or call the office at 508-693-1117.

West Tisbury Affordable Housing Awarded

The Vineyard Gazette reported this week that two young West Tisbury families were the happy winners in a lottery held this week for two new affordable homes.

Spencer Binney and Lizzy Kent, their baby daughter Willow and her brother Levi will move into a home at 619 Edgartown-West Tisbury Road next month. Jason and Darcy Neago and sons Tristan and Griffin will be their next-door neighbors.

The lottery took place at the town selectmen’s meeting Wednesday afternoon.

The two three-bedroom energy-efficient houses on three acres were built by South Mountain Company for the nonprofit Island Housing Trust, which developed the project and holds a ground lease on the land. Families and individuals earning between $47,200 and $67,450 were eligible for the lottery; the houses are being sold for $225,000. The selection process included preference for larger household size and people living and working in town, housing trust executive director Philippe Jordi said at the meeting.

Land for the project was donated by Kristian Strom, financing was provided by the Edgartown National Bank.

“We wish our homeowners the best,” Mr. Jordi said.

Dukes County Regional Housing Authority executive director David Vigneault, who handled the applications, thanked the trust and the town for their efforts.