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HUD funds to boost apartment safety

January 20, 1998

HUD funds to boost apartment safety

By DON AINES

Staff Writer, Martinsburg

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Two subsidized housing complexes in the Eastern Panhandle were awarded Department of Housing and Urban Development grants totaling $236,000 to improve safety and security.

A HUD Drug Elimination Grant of $124,382 was recently approved for Franklin Manor Apartments in Martinsburg and $112,367 for the Apple Tree Garden Apartments in Ranson, W.Va., according to Greg Griffin, senior property manager for Humphrey Management of Silver Spring, Md.

Griffin said recently the money will be used to install additional exterior lighting, video surveillance equipment and fencing at the two apartment complexes. He said the fencing would be a decorative wrought iron designed to deter trespassing and control traffic, but the communities will not be gated.

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"We're mainly worried about trespassers," said Griffin. He said the vast majority of criminal incidents at the apartment complexes are committed by nonresidents.

"Franklin Manor has some existing video surveillance ... It's proved extremely effective," Griffin said. He said more of the motion-activated cameras will be installed at the 48-unit complex.

Humphrey Management acquired the 94-unit Apple Tree Garden Apartments in September. In addition to the new security measures, Griffin said a police substation is housed in the development's community room.

"It's our goal that everyone has the right to safe and affordable housing" where they can raise their families, Griffin said.

Griffin said the work is expected to start in February and be completed by late spring. He said field manager Diane Nicholson and Tom and Sue Middlekauff, the maintenance and site managers at Franklin Manor, did most of the work in preparing the grant application approved by HUD.

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