Welcome To NINA

NINA is the Northside Institutions Neighborhood Alliance, a non-profit community development corporation at work in the Asylum Hill neighborhood of Hartford. Our goal is to remediate blighted historic properties and to rehabilitate them as owner-occupied homes for low- to moderate-income households.

We've been at this since 2003, and in that time we've moved a house, built an elevator, and invested some $14 million in the neighborhood.

Our web site is being upgraded to better accommodate smart phones and the like, but in the meantime please enjoy your visit. And please feel free to contact us with any questions.

This home was NINA's second new construction. We built this single-family home on a vacant lot that the Asylum Hill Congregational Church donated to us, and we designed it to fit not only the architectural and historical character of Asylum Hill but also its neighbor directly to the north. That house, 181 Collins Street, was probably designed by George Keller (so says David Ransom, which is good enough for us!), and we followed the gables and pitched roof of this house as we designed 54 Huntington.

The Zunner Building: named in honor of the architect who designed the building, George Zunner, who was one of the most prolific architects in Hartford. This 1920s building had been a symbol of decay in Asylum Hill, but it is now the neighborhood's newest sign of revitalization. NINA undertook a $2.5 million renovation that completely overhauled this mixed-use building: NINA reduced the number and enlarged the size of the apartments, adding air-conditioning and laundry in each unit, re-configured the third floor as office space, and updated the ground floor retail space.

NINA's first project in the Nook Farm district of Asylum Hill, this classic 1875 Italianate was restored to its original look and footprint from a vacant three-family home. The home is the gateway to the neighborhood, and it can be viewed from the highway, the train, and the rapid transit busway. In fact, this project is the first example of transit-oriented development associated with CTfastrak in Hartford. Winner, 2015 Hartford Preservation Alliance Award for Best Historic Restoration.

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Before and After

291-293 Sargeant Street

291-293 Sargeant Street was built as two, side-by-side units with a brick firewall running through the center of the structure, and the house is symmetrical along the firewall. The design of the house reflected an emerging trend toward architectural symmetry that was becoming more prevalent at the turn of the Twentieth Century, and it integrates a mix of Colonial Revival and Queen Anne elements that is very common in the Sigourney Square District. The windows are arranged in pairs to create a balanced composition, which was favored under the Colonial Revival style, while the exterior wall treatment clapboard along the first floor with staggered shingles on the upper stories is more commonly associated with the Queen Anne style. This eclectic mix is reflected throughout the neighboring homes, all of which were built during this same period in Hartford's history, and these homes remain largely intact today. NINA acquired the home and began its rehabilitation of the home in 2008 following a fire in December 2007 that caused significant damage to the third floor.


Restored Homes


New Homes


Current Projects


Years at Work

Latest Post



Tonight at a ceremony at TheaterWorks, the Connecticut Chapter of the American Institute of Architects presented NINA with its 2017 Public Service Award. The award honored NINA for its work revitalizing the Asylum Hill neighborhood through the rehabilitation of historic homes as well as for the construction of historically sensitive new homes. NINA Board Member Tiana Hercules accepted the award on

What Are We Working On Now?

Pressing ahead on 52 Huntington Street We're about 60% complete right now, which means we have walls, wiring, and plumbing. If the weather forecasters stop predicting nor'easters for a little bit, we'll get back to the siding and start painting. We've already had interest in the house, so we put it on the market last week -- and we've already had two showing! If you'd like to see the house, pl

Dateline Asylum Hill

It's an article of faith in the neighborhood that Sigourney Street and Sigourney Square Park are both named for Lydia Sigourney, the greatest female poet of the 19th century who you've never heard of, but suddenly we aren't so sure anymore! As we've been doing some research on the history of Asylum Hill, we've come across numerous references to Sigourney Street that pre-date the standard date of