Concord Heating System Replacement
CDBG Helps Replace Antiquated, Hazardous Furnaces
Many people don't think about how important their heating system is until it breaks down or malfunctions. So when homeowners in the Island Shores Estates and the Mastyard West housing developments in Concord began having fires and equipment failures, it was serious.
“You know the system you are operating could go up just like that,” said Richard Matthews, a resident who needed a replacement furnace. “Not only were the heating systems a fire hazard, they could not be repaired.”
The City of Concord stepped in and applied to CDFA for a $170,000 CDBG Affordable Housing Grant that helped residents replace the outdated, hazardous heating systems.
“I would look out the window and see fire trucks and know in a minute what happened. You know the system you are operating could go up just like that,” said. “The safety factor was very critical to me. Not only were the heating systems a fire hazard, they could not be repaired because the manufacturer had gone out of business some 20 years earlier. And a small stockpile of replacement parts ran out a long time ago.” In fact, there have been at least five serious fires caused by malfunctioning gas furnaces.
Matt Walsh, Assistant for Special Projects for the City of Concord, NH, believes in the value of CDBG money to the City and the importance of this particular project for low- and moderate income individuals.
Because an estimated 65 households in this area are low to moderate income, they were eligible for CDBG funds to replace the heating units. Working with the owners' association, funds were provided. Matthews says, “It was a godsend because otherwise I'd still be having sleepless nights.”