Restored buildings in the Solders Home property have already provided new apartments to 42 households of veterans who were, or risked becoming, homeless. Three more are set to move in on Friday, said developer Joe Alexander. Check out the attached slideshow to get a look at the high-profile project.

The president of the Alexander Co. on Thursday held a ceremonial event marking completion of the approximately $44 million project at the historic Soldiers Home grounds in Milwaukee. Alexander Co. in partnership with the Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee restored six unused buildings on the grounds, creating 101 affordable apartments for veterans.

“It’s the only housing option that isn’t substandard or an alternative sort of structure,” said Alexander, president of the Madison-based real estate firm.

Agreements are approved for veterans to fill 70 of the apartments, including those already occupied, Alexander said. They opened to tenants in the first week of March.

Residents of the buildings have access to case management, educational and employment services through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and The Center for Veterans Issues Ltd.

“The Milwaukee VA has been the front line in terms of identifying potential residents and working with them through the application process, getting them approved and ready to move in, and then involved in the supportive services,” Alexander said. “They are building those relationships before they move in and continuing for as long as they are here.”

The project found a viable reuse for late 1800s-era buildings constructed to support veterans of the U.S. Civil War. Old Main, the largest building rehabbed by the developers, had sat unused and empty since 1989. Located on a national landmark, the buildings are publicly owned and leased long-term to the developers by the VA.

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This article was originally published by the Milwaukee Business Journal.