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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


In this instance, it’s OK to color outside the lines

Worcester County’s Habitat for Humanity is taking a bold and non-traditional step with its plan to develop a housing project geared toward artists.
Although Habitat’s purpose generally is to provide reasonable and affordable housing for families, its proposed 6,000-square foot complex adheres to the nonprofit organization’s principles while also taking an entrepreneurial step that is expected to pay dividends over the longer term.
Most artists aren’t exactly flush with money – the struggling artist image is more often true than not – and can’t afford a reasonable place to live. This Habitat venture, however, is going a step farther by providing artists who meet the nonprofit organization’s financial requirements a place to live – and work.
In addition to three apartments that will be offered for sale, the project also will have three retail units that can be rented as gallery or studio space, with that rental income helping Habitat to pursue its traditional mission.
Obviously, Habitat’s leadership knows how well this housing concept would fit in with Berlin, given the community’s cultivation of the arts in recent years as part of its image.
It also knows that, even if it does receive the state department of housing grant that it’s pursuing, it will still need all the public support it can muster to see the project through.
There’s no better way to do that than to offer something that coincides with the town’s own objectives, which are, after all, designed to benefit the entire community.
We fully endorse Habitat’s plan and encourage area residents to do what they can to see it come to fruition. Additionally, we congratulate Habitat for its creative approach and being willing, in this instance, to color outside the lines.