PATERSON, NJ – New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (HMFA) Executive Director, Anthony Marchetta, recently joined local officials, HUD representatives, Paterson Housing Authority executive and representatives of Pennrose Properties, LLC, to celebrate the grand opening of Freedom Village, a 70-unit affordable rental community for 62 and older seniors in Paterson, Passaic County. The HMFA, an affiliate of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA), awarded the unique redevelopment project federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) that have generated approximately $14.5 million in private equity.
"DCA is committed to providing quality affordable housing as the foundation for improving New Jersey’s communities," said DCA Commissioner Charles Richman, who also serves as Chairman of the HMFA board. "This investment not only brings underutilized properties back to productive use, but creates housing opportunities that will make a real difference in the lives of Paterson’s senior citizens."
The redevelopment project involved the revitalization of approximately 12 acres of land which was formerly the Alexander Hamilton Public Housing Project, it also included the demolition of 2.3 acre site where an old brewery and a onetime dye factory once stood. Freedom Village, a fully gated senior community is a single four story building with 70 one-bedroom apartments which provide an open floor plan design and large windows to allow for plenty of natural light. The apartment building is conveniently located near public transportation and offers amenities such as an on-site fitness center, a community room, onsite management and maintenance offices and laundry facilities through the building.
All units are affordable to seniors 62 or older earning 60% or less than the Area Median Income (AMI), with the five set aside units available to homeless elderly earning 20% AMI. Supportive services for the homeless elderly population will be provided through PennReach to assist them to live independently.
"Freedom Village redevelopment fulfills HMFA’s mission to promote construction and rehabilitation of rental housing, advance the growth and development of municipalities, and contribute the quality of life of older adults, individuals with disabilities, and those with special housing needs," said HMFA Executive Director Marchetta. "We are so proud to have provided the capital financing that enabled the development of this project, which provides residents with access to safe, decent, affordable housing while contributing to the local and state economy."
The project, which cost approximately $17.5 million to develop, not only provides necessary affordable housing opportunities for seniors in New Jersey, but also has a positive economic impact on the greater Passaic County community.
"Freedom Village is another great example of how the Low Income Tax Credit program plays a critical role in transforming neighborhoods and cities," said Timothy I. Henkel, senior vice president of Pennrose Properties, LLC. "The seniors that will soon call this community their home will be proud to have living accommodations of this quality and caliber that doesn’t currently exist in Paterson."
HMFA estimates that the project has generated approximately $28 million in one-time economic output, defined as the total value of industry production, such as sales and business revenues. During construction, the project supported approximately 166 direct and indirect/induced full-time equivalent jobs, and approximately $1 million in state and local taxes. Now completed, the project will continue to add value to the community by providing approximately $3 million in ongoing economic output, 17 direct and indirect/induced full-time equivalent jobs, and approximately $175,000 in state and local taxes annually.
Economic Impact Analysis figures were estimated using multipliers derived from a 2013 study entitled "Economic and Fiscal Impacts of the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency’s Investment in Affordable Housing," conducted by HR&A Advisors, Inc., a real estate and economic development consulting firm.
Other funding sources for the development of the Freedom Village include $1.1million in HOPE VI funds and $1.1 million in Replacement Housing Factor from the Housing Authority of the City of Paterson.
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 $190 million in equity for the development of affordable housing in the State. Freedom Village was awarded the extremely competitive 9% LIHTCs from the 2013 non-Sandy Senior Cycle that provided close to 79 percent of the funding.
For more information on HMFA programs, please call 1-800-NJHOUSE or (609) 278-7400, or visit http://www.njhousing.gov/