New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency

Groundbreaking Marks Start of Major Renovation of Affordable Apartments in Camden

For Immediate Release:
April 26, 2019
Amy Palmer

Project Includes 64 Townhomes in Historic Neighborhood

CAMDEN – New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA) Executive Director Charles A. Richman, local officials and The Michaels Organization broke ground today on a major renovation of 64 townhomes that will preserve historic properties and affordable homes for families living in the city.

Cooper Plaza Townhomes is the restoration of a five-block section of homes in the vicinity of Cooper University Hospital and the city’s downtown business district, close to jobs, transportation, shopping and schools. The project consists of 34 buildings, including: 25 historic Victorian-style townhomes with 47 apartments; six buildings housing 11 apartments; and three buildings with six apartments.  

With the preservation, all 64 townhomes will remain permanently affordable for households earning less than 80 percent of the area median income

“Cooper Plaza is a project that is central to the mission of the Murphy Administration to create housing that is affordable that also historically preserves and aesthetically enhances the community,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver, who also serves as Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs and Chair of the NJHMFA Board. “These newly renovated homes are part of a greater initiative to create more opportunities for high quality housing for New Jersey families while helping to create stronger and healthier communities.”

The majority of the two- and three-bedroom townhomes are occupied, but Michaels will first renovate approximately a dozen vacant apartments to enable current residents to relocate “in-place,” allowing for the least amount of disruption while their homes undergo renovation.

The $14 million rehabilitation will modernize both the interiors and exteriors including: new HVAC and mechanical systems, new roofs, new windows and porch upgrades, and the construction of new drainage and waterproofing systems to address water infiltration issues. Interior improvements will include renovated kitchens and bathrooms, new appliances and new flooring.

“Many of these distinctive buildings once provided homes for doctors and administrators at Cooper Hospital. Today, they are continuing to serve the community by providing much-needed affordable homes for families,” said NJHMFA Executive Director Richman. “NJHMFA is excited to be part of the Cooper Plaza Townhomes project. This redevelopment not only renews the life of these buildings, which will continue to provide homes for city residents, but revitalizes the community as we build a stronger and fairer New Jersey.”

NJHMFA awarded the development 4% Low Income Housing Tax Credits, which generated $4.1 million in private equity, and $6.8 million in permanent conduit bond financing. The Michaels Organization will assume an existing mortgage funded with $2.5 million from the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs.

Construction is expected to be completed before year's end, and rental information is available by calling 856-541-9609.

The Michaels Organization is a national leader in residential real estate offering full-service capabilities in development, property management, construction, and finance. Serving 145,000 residents in more than 400 communities nationwide, Michaels is committed to crafting housing solutions that jumpstart education, civic engagement, and neighborhood prosperity and to creating Communities That Lift Lives.

For more information on NJHMFA and its programs, visit

Groundbreaking Marks Start of Major Renovation of Affordable Apartments in Camden
High Res Photo

From left, NJHMFA Executive Director Charles A. Richman; Camden County Freeholder Susan Shin Angulo; Rep. Donald Norcross; Camden Mayor Frank Moran; Sheila Roberts, President, Cooper Lanning Civic Organization; Richard S. Mroz, Board of Directors, Federal Home Loan Bank of New York; Mary Concepcion, resident, Cooper Plaza Townhomes; John J. O'Donnell, CEO, The Michaels Organization; and Nicholas Cangelosi, Vice President of Development,The Michaels Organization.