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Affordable-housing project in Chinatown merited a mention

How did you miss the affordable housing? Your front-page Nov. 26 article “As residences rise, downtown builds a new vitality” failed to include the housing development in the neighborhood — Chinatown — that has survived the era of the Combat Zone but that now faces new challenges. Within sight of the Kensington, which you featured, the redevelopment of the Hong Lok House is underway after more than seven years of work by two charities.

The Greater Boston Chinese Golden Age Center and Rogerson Communities are preserving 28 units of precious affordable housing for low-income elders and adding 47 affordable units in a beautiful new building that has saved historic facades along Essex Street.

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The project also includes a much-needed adult day health program in the heart of Chinatown.

This is a success story funded in part by the City of Boston’s “linkage” funds paid by the Kensington development — almost $5 million in private philanthropy as well as state and federal affordable-housing program funds. Hong Lok House will be an affordable-housing gem when it is completed in 2013. It certainly deserved a spot on your colorful graphic of downtown resurgence.

Jeffrey Sacks


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