Chelsea grants final approval for Cabin in the Woods project

The approval clears the way for Volunteers of America to build cabins for homeless veterans on the Togus campus.

Officials from Chelsea and Volunteers of America have reached an agreement on taxes for the Cabin in the Woods project, clearing the way for a new type of housing for homeless veterans.

The project, which will build permanent housing for veterans who are homeless or on the verge of being so on the VA Maine Healthcare Systems—Togus campus in Chelsea, will make annual payments of $5,000 for 15 years in lieu of taxes.

Bill Butler, the code enforcement officer for the town of Chelsea, reviews the plan for the Cabin in the Woods project for homeless veterans in 2016. Staff file photo by Jessica Lowell


Michael Coon, vice president of external relations for Volunteers of America Northern New England, said via email Thursday that his organization was pleased with the results of Wednesday’s Chelsea selectmen’s meeting.

“We are excited to start the next step in the process for the Cabin in the Woods housing project,” Coon said.

Scott Tilton, Chelsea town manager, said the payments in lieu of taxes will be paid over 15 years, which is the life of the financing.

Volunteers of America also has received final subdivision approval from the Chelsea Planning Board, a step that was required for the organization to secure construction financing.

Coon said Planning Board Chairwoman Andrea Smith has sent a letter of approval.

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