Crews work around the clock to build home for veteran in 5 days

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RICHMOND, Va. -- The Richmond nonprofit Project:HOMES is leading the efforts to build a new home for a military veteran in just five days. Construction of the three-bedroom, two-bathroom home in the Barton Heights community of North Richmond began Monday.

Philip Morris gave the nonprofit a grant and a team of engineering interns who came up with the plans to condense the project, that usually takes months, into days.

"Their role was really to work out the crazy logistics behind trying to build a house in five days," Jim Dawson, with Philip Morris, said. "Managing the budget, also working on the contractor side."

Dawson, who supervised the interns, said the biggest challenge was scheduling all the workers. More than 100 workers from dozens of local construction companies were split into three eight-hour shifts. They have been working quickly in the heat.

Some showed up to work overnight to avoid extreme temperatures.

Project manager Kim Jordan has been a part of more than 100 construction projects in Richmond.

"I like a challenge and I like that it's for a good cause," Jordan said. "Everybody's been great, you know, they know the situation. They know they're going to be on top of each other."

The mission of Project:HOMES is to improve homes and revitalize communities for low-income families by making repairs and building affordable housing.

The goal is to sell this home to a veteran in need.

"Makes me feel good that somebody that deserves a house is getting it, and I feel good about the quality of the work that we put into these houses," Jordan said.

"Just to come here on a Monday and have a house done on a Friday. And for somebody -- who maybe home ownership wasn’t available to before -- to have this opportunity is a big deal, we’re really excited," Matt Morgan, Deputy Director of Neighborhood Revitalization with ProjectHOMES said.

Project:HOMES has built 138 homes in the Richmond area since 2000. Last year, they built a home in seven days in the same neighborhood.

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