12 June 2017

Sneak Preview > Community Development Partners Set For Move-Ins @ El Rancho Del Sol

Seems just like yesterday there was a new shovel-ready dig on ground here in The New Urban Downtown Mesa for Phase 2 of El Rancho del Arte.
The groundbreaking ceremony took place on October 17, 2016 at 659 E Main Street. The keynote speaker was Arizona Department of Housing Director Michael Trailor, along with Kimber Lanning of Local First Arizona and Eric Paine, Community Development Partners and others 
Nine months later it's almost ready for move-ins, with a vigorous response from the community to fulfill the need [and shortage] of affordable housing. 
Celtic Property Management is now accepting applications on a waiting list.
Building out the core aspects of El Rancho del Arte, El Rancho del Sol represents a comprehensive approach to designing and developing affordable housing, where not only are residents’ basic housing needs met, but a community is energized and engaged.
Christian Hulme guided your MesaZona blogger around the work-in-progress today - it's very impressive. Both buildings setting new standards for the attainable and affordable housing market will be featured in a series of upcoming posts.

The new construction getting ready for tentative occupancy at the end of June and into July consists of 47 units serving low-income households earning between 40-60% of the Area Median Income, with a preference for families with children. The project will be comprised of 26 two-bed, 11 three-bed, and 10 four-bed units, with sizes ranging from 942 to 1,988 square feet. 
A New Leaf will provide resident supportive services and Local First Arizona will provide an on-site micro enterprise accelerator program for enterprising residents. Similar to its predecessor El Rancho del Arte, the adjacent El Rancho del Sol will integrate the arts into its design through installations and ongoing programming. The new community—designed by Perlman Architects, constructed by Rytan Construction, and managed by Celtic Property Management— is working to achieve LEED Gold certification.
Eric Paine [seen to the right] Chief Executive Officer of Community Development Partners, says, “Our mission is to not only provide housing, but create healthy and engaged neighborhoods.  We are pleased with how El Rancho del Arte is becoming a community hub and look forward to delivering a second phase that continues the mission.”
When yours truly emailed him about arranging the on-site walk through, he joked and said Be ready for a few surprises . . . gotta say I was knocked-out by the "surprises" - totally impressed [not that that means anything to industry professionals] but more about the surprises in other featured posts on the blog site and on social media.
The project was partially financed by the sale of 9% Low Income Housing Tax Credits awarded by Arizona Department of Housing (ADOH) in 2015.  The tax credit investor is Alliant Capital.  A construction and permanent loan from Chase bank, HOME and Housing Trust Funds from ADOH and a HOME Loan from the City of Mesa, along with an acquisition/pre-development loan from Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) financed the remaining project costs.
About Community Development Partners
Founded in 2011, Community Development Partners develops and operates sustainable, life-enhancing affordable housing with a focus on long term community engagement and innovative design. The company is based in Orange County and has developed or currently operates properties in Arizona, California, and Oregon. 
Excerpts and details are taken from https://prismpub.com

For more information, visit: communitydevpartners.com.
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Related content
Assessing and Improving the Community Development Block Grant
April 13, 2017  
by Brett Theodos and Christina Stacy 
Source: https://howhousingmatters.org
As the federal budget tightens, major sources of federal support for US communities are in the spotlight, but the conversations are often short on evidence—especially for block grant programs. Block grants give states or localities formula-based funding and general guidelines for their use, allowing the exact uses to be determined by the grantees, a departure from the earlier model in which federal funding rules dictated how states and localities spent funds.
For community development and housing activities, the Community Development Block Grant program (CDBG) has been a substantial source of flexible funds for more than 40 years. The program’s creation reflected a bipartisan compromise between those who wanted to devolve decisionmaking power to state and local governments and those who wanted to create a national program benefiting low-income communities. As a block grant, it could do both.
Community Development Block Grants continue to play an important role as a unique community development resource.
According to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), between 2005 and 2013,
  • CDBG created or retained 330,546 jobs,
  • assisted over 1.1 million people with homeownership and improvements,
  • benefited over 33 million people nationwide through public improvements, and
  • provided public services to over 105 million people.
Furthermore, practitioners report that the program is used as the “first capital in” to a project, which is critical in attracting other capital sources.
But CDBG funding may be eliminated, and the program has faced criticism for the lack of evidence on its benefits. This lack of evidence may be more related to evaluation capacity or factors that could be addressed with different implementation guidance rather than a lack of true impacts.

To read the entire article, please go > https://howhousingmatters.org/articles/assessing-improving-community-development-block-grant/

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