My turn

Grand opening held for affordable senior housing in East Chicago

2013-07-26T00:00:00Z Grand opening held for affordable senior housing in East ChicagoBy Steve Segura Times Columnist nwitimes.com
July 26, 2013 12:00 am  • 

The Community Builders Inc., the nation’s leading nonprofit urban housing developer, along with the City of East Chicago and the Department of Housing and Urban Development celebrated this week the ribbon cutting ceremony for Northtown Village Senior Apartments, a mixed-income housing development.

Mayor Anthony Copeland joined TCB President and CEO Bart Mitchell, HUD Field Office Director John Hall, 6th District East Chicago Councilwoman Gilda Orange, and residents to commemorate this much-anticipated senior development in East Chicago’s lakefront community.

Northtown Village Senior Apartments provides elderly residents the opportunity to live in high-quality mixed-income housing at the center of the North Harbor’s ongoing community revitalization. A total of 56 elderly households, with income up to the mid-$30,000 range, will now join the 125 working families who have moved into rental town homes at Main Street and Broadway and the home buyers at Washington Square and Nunez Park benefiting from Mayor Copeland’s Homeownership Incentive Program.

“We are proud to bring quality housing intentionally designed to improve the lives of East Chicago’s seniors and help rebuild the Main and Broadway district,” said Mitchell. “Northtown Village Senior Apartments gives senior residents a beautiful and affordable place to call home, while strengthening the surrounding community.”

Central to senior housing’s success has been an innovative partnership between the City of East Chicago and HUD that provides assistance to Northtown Senior to help ensure long-term high-quality operations. It also gives senior citizens at Harborside Apartments the opportunity to move to high-quality elderly housing while allowing the city to begin planning the demolition of vacant buildings at Harborside.

“This beautifully designed senior building will serve as an anchor point in the North Harbor downtown area," Mayor Copeland said. "This is the first step of many we will take with The Community Builders toward building and beautifying our North Harbor downtown area.”

Northtown Village Senior Apartments and the North Harbor’s revitalization are part the City of East Chicago’s larger and ongoing efforts to redevelop the entire East Chicago lakefront.

Construction of the development began in fall 2011, and of the 56 units available, only seven remain available.

Development costs totaled more than $11 million. Funding was provided by the City of East Chicago, Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, HUD, TCB NSP2, IFF, Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago, JP Morgan Capital Corporation and Hudson Housing Capital.

The new development includes a social lounge, exercise room and programming, a balcony overlooking the adjacent park, indoor parking, on-site 24-hour emergency maintenance service, secured entries and a professional bilingual management team. The apartments feature open floor plans, Energy Star appliances and amenities especially designed for seniors.

Steve Segura is the East Chicago multimedia director. The opinions expressed are his own. He can be reached at ssegura@eastchicago.com.

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