Courtesy Gorman & Co.

Valor on Washington is helping meet the needs of veteran and active military families in Madison, Wisconsin.

With these families in mind, Gorman & Co. and Great Lakes Dryhootch created a community with 59 two- and three-bedroom apartments. Fifty units are affordable, including 12 that are integrated supportive housing units for households at 30% of the area median income and eight that are under a Housing Assistance Payment contract from the Dane County Housing Authority. In addition, there are nine units with unrestricted rents, creating a true mixed-income development.

More than housing, Valor on Washington is the new headquarters for Great Lakes Dryhootch, a nonprofit formed by veterans to help other vets in their return home. “Hootch” is military slang for a haven to stay in during combat, and “dry” refers to the organization’s mission to provide an alcohol-free place for vets.

The nonprofit was instrumental in conceiving the idea for the new development. “They said, ‘the type of housing that we’re missing is family housing for vets. It’s fallen through the cracks,’” says Ted Matkom, Wisconsin market president at Gorman, noting that veterans housing often targets single men and women.

Courtesy Dryhootch

Dryhootch’s on-site presence provides residents with access to the organization’s supportive services. The nonprofit also contributed to the project’s design, which includes key space for veterans to meet and play areas for children.

The $18.9 million project is also significant because it replaces a blighted factory that had shuttered. Dane County purchased the property and sought a team to redevelop the site. Gorman & Co. was selected for the project, receiving a 99-year ground lease.

The firm brought its extensive experience in creating affordable housing and revitalizing communities to the development.