July 31, 2014 Christie Administration Marks Grand Opening of St. Bridget’s Senior Residence in Jersey City
Christie Administration Marks Grand Opening of St. Bridget’s Senior Residence in Jersey City
Adaptive Reuse of Rectory, Convent, and School Provides Affordable Housing Opportunities Including those for Individuals with Special Needs and the Frail Elderly
JERSEY CITY, NJ – New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (HMFA) Executive Director Anthony L. Marchetta joined state and city officials, and community leaders to celebrate the grand opening of St. Bridget’s Senior Residence, a 46-unit senior rental community in Jersey City, Hudson County. The HMFA, an affiliate of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA), awarded the project the competitive 9% federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) that generated approximately $7.2 million in private equity.
“We are excited to see the opening of St. Bridget’s Senior Residence in Jersey City that will provide affordable housing opportunities for the city’s senior citizens and individuals with special needs,” said DCA Commissioner Richard E. Constable, III, who also serves as Chairman of the HMFA. “Projects like this help preserve historical landmarks, enhance urban neighborhoods, bring new hope to senior citizens, and foster community development in our cities.”
The project, which cost approximately $10.6 million to develop, will not only provide affordable housing opportunities for seniors, but will also continue to have a positive economic impact on the Hudson County community. HMFA estimates that the project has generated approximately $16.8 million in one-time economic output, 101 full-time jobs, and $616,000 in state and local taxes during construction. Now completed, the project will continue to add value to the community by providing approximately $1.9 million in ongoing economic output, 11 full time jobs, and $106,000 in state and local taxes annually.
Other funding sources for the development of St. Bridget’s Senior Residence included Historic Tax Credits provided by the federal Historic Tax Credit Program and syndicated by Enterprise Community Investment, Inc., which also syndicated the Low Income Housing Tax Credits provided by HMFA, a construction loan provided by TD Bank, Jersey City’s Affordable Housing Program Funds and HOME funds, and a deferred developer fee.
Located in the downtown Jersey City Van Vorst Park Historic District, the project consists of 46 apartment units in two three-story buildings, and one five-story building at the St. Bridget’s Roman Catholic Church, a beloved downtown Jersey City landmark. The two three-story buildings were originally a rectory where a parish priest or rector lived and a convent, while the five-story building was originally a school. The three buildings and campus were completely rehabilitated and adaptively reused as apartments in accordance with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic properties, and the New Jersey State Historic Preservation Office and the National Park Service.
The downtown section of Jersey City where the project is located has experienced a tremendous economic revival over the past 30 years resulting from the development of Hudson County’s first regional mall, thousands of square feet of commercial office space, and thousands of units of new market rate housing.
Community amenities include an onsite laundry, community room, and an outdoor garden for growing fruits, vegetables, and herbs. St. Bridget's Senior Residence will offer a comprehensive program of social services for all residents and a supportive housing plan for five of the 14 units set aside for individuals with special needs. The plan includes social service coordination or case management, health care advocacy and linkages, nursing services, home-based personal or medical assistance, meals, and housekeeping.
“I am so pleased that the HMFA, New Jersey’s affordable and workforce housing bank, provided the critical financing that brought St. Bridget’s Senior Residence to fruition,” said HMFA Executive Director Marchetta. “The LIHTC program has helped produce more than 40,000 housing opportunities for New Jersey’s working class since its inception in 1986, and is one of the most successful and efficient federal housing programs ever created to incentivize the private market to invest in the creation or rehabilitation of quality affordable rental housing that enhances our neighborhoods.”
One hundred percent of the project units are affordable, with 41 units available to households with incomes at or below 60% of the Area Median Income (AMI), and five special needs units at or below 30% AMI.
Annually, states are allocated Low Income Housing Tax Credits by the federal government on a per-capita basis. HMFA, as the administrator of the federal Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program in New Jersey, allocates approximately $20 million in 9% credits annually, which generates over $180 million in equity for the development of affordable housing in the state.
The project was co-developed by RCG Development Group and the Alpert Group.
For more information on HMFA programs, please visit www.njhousing.gov.
(L-R) Joe Alpert of the Alpert Group, his wife Susan Alpert, Thomas Eastman of Enterprise Community Investment, Anthony Marchetta Executive Director of the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency, Councilwoman Diane Coleman, Senator Sandra Cunningham, Mayor Steven Fulop, Christopher Garlin of RCG Development Group, his wife Regina Garlin, Fr. Victor Kennedy and Thomas Ponticelli from TD Bank.