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MACV unveils Arlington House, with 10 units for veterans experiencing homelessness

St. Paul’s Arlington House opens in fight against veteran homelessness
St. Paul’s Arlington House opens in fight against veteran homelessness 02:01

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Veterans who had been living on the street now have a new home in St. Paul as part of the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans' effort to end homelessness.

After two years of renovation work, two buildings that sat vacant for years on Laurpenteur Avenue in St. Paul will now house unsheltered veterans. 

Apprentices from Carpenters Union Local 332 did the work on Arlington House. Some are part of the Helmets to Hardhats program that gives veterans another way to serve in the trades after their military service.

MACV leaders say this project is a vortex of good will. Lots of local businesss and nonprofits helped to make this possible.

The buildings have 10 units, all with their own design. Five of them are accessible to help veterans with mobility issues.

"When I first walked in, the first thing I noticed was the kitchen size," said Army veteran Benton Robinson. "Just the space, I mean me walking through here sometimes I feel like I might get lost. I might have to leave bread crumbs around to find my way around."

The three-bedroom and two-bathroom apartment will now be a home for Robinson's family. 

"As a parent, that's the most important part for me 'cause I am able to keep a roof over their head you know. They have space, it's a safe neighborhood," said Robinson."Without MACV I don't know where i would be and I'm just very grateful."

Robinson is even more grateful for the Mikulay Foundation, whose generous donation made all the renovations possible.

"It's just nice to know that when you come home, if you do fall on hard times that it's people out here that got your back," said Robinson.

Arlington House has a recreation room, a gym and laundry. There is also a MACV office on site to help veterans who live there.

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