Holyoke spending federal grant money on demolition, sidewalk improvements

Park improvements, job programs also among areas receiving funding

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – The City of Holyoke has a plan to put the federal government’s money to good use.

Holyoke has $1.6 million from HUD that they plan to spend to demolish blighted buildings. But that’s not all. They also plan to fix the city’s sidewalks, revitalize city parks, and provide funding for public services, such as job training, education, and food pantries.

Among the properties on the list for demolition: 405 Main Street, 808 Dwight Street (where there was a fire) and 569 South Bridge Street.

City officials told 22News that this Community Development Block Grant funding is key.

“They’re critical, they add to our municipal budget in areas that we wouldn’t normally be able to provide our residents with services,” said Alicia Zoller of the Holyoke Office for Community Development.

“That’s something that we want to make sure doesn’t change. There has been a lot of talk nationally about cutting HUD’s budget and cutting the CDBG allocation. But for cities like Holyoke and Springfield and other communities, CDBG money allows us to invest money into projects we wouldn’t otherwise have funds to do,” Mayor Alex Morse said.

City officials say that if you need a new roof, new windows, or maybe you are elderly and lack heat or hot water, give them a call. They can try and get grant money to improve your home.