New Canaan — The town’s push for more affordable housing units at Millport Apartments recently received state support.

The town will receive $5.1 million in state funding for affordable housing, according to a statement from the office of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy.

The funding, part of a statewide $55 million in loans and grants, will be used in phase two of New Canaan Housing Authority’s redevelopment of Millport Apartments, where the first phase of 33 new units is wrapping up. Phase two will see an additional 40 units at Millport.

According to New Canaan Housing Authority Chairman Scott Hobbs, the timing of the two projects is very important, and without the $5.1 million from the state, phase two may have been delayed.

“It’s a critical element of financing for this next phase. It’s important that we got the money when we did because we want to move right from phase one to phase two,” Hobbs said.

If phase two of the project was to be delayed, Hobbs has said it could cause costs to skyrocket.

“One of the most expensive parts about any development is moving tenants. And if you can imagine, trying to move tenants in New Canaan and paying their rent — market rent for a year, year-and-a-half while the process goes on — can add hundreds of thousands of dollars to a project,” Hobbs said at a Sept. 21 meeting of the Town Council, during which the town appropriated $190,000 to help with the completion of phase one.

With phase two coming on the heels of phase one, tenants living in at the top of the hill in Millport Apartments — where phase two building will take place — could be moved into the recently completed phase one units at the bottom of the hill.

“We’re really excited to get our grant from the state. This is very important and it will allow us to move forward,” Hobbs said.

According to Malloy’s news release, the $55 million will help fund 13 affordable housing units in 11 municipalities across the state, including two projects in Norwalk and one in Stamford.

“Under Gov. Malloy’s leadership, we have spearheaded the rapid creation and redevelopment of affordable housing across the state,” Department of Housing Commissioner Evonne Klein said in the release. “Ensuring access to quality, safe and affordable housing for Connecticut residents is good for the economy, good for local businesses, and it adds vibrancy to our communities.”

justin.papp@scni.com; @justinjpapp1