Oct 7, 2010

Englewood Apartments

901 West 63rd Street: Future site of Englewood Apartments

Good news for the Englewood neighborhood.

Just a little bit west of a couple of Dot's old haunts--the Linden Theater and Whelan's Drugs--and across 63rd Street from where L. Fish Furniture once stood, the City of Chicago will be building a supportive housing complex.

Mayor Richard M. Daley today dedicated the Englewood Apartments, a new, $17.3 million supportive housing development containing environmentally friendly features for formerly homeless individuals and CHA tenants.

“We know that permanent, affordable housing linked with a range of support services is critical in helping those at risk of homelessness find the help they need to live independent, healthy and fulfilling lives,” Daley said at a ceremony at the building, 901 W. 63rd St. “By combining housing and support services, we are helping some of our most vulnerable residents overcome personal challenges and build a better life.”

Englewood Apartments is a part of the City’s Plan to End Homelessness and the CHA Plan for Transformation. Half the units are for those who endured homeless and half are CHA replacement units.

Operated by Mercy Housing Lakefront, the six-story building will be home to very low-income individuals. Tenants will have access to on-site services, including substance-abuse treatment and employment training.

The 99 studio apartments will include kitchenettes and bathrooms with approximately 354 square feet of living space. The development will also provide ground-floor space for offices and on-site case workers.

“Supportive housing with on-site services is a demonstrated solution to help individuals transition toward a life of self-sufficiency,” Daley said.

“We know that offering safe housing and support services under one roof helps break the cycle of poverty — and in some cases, homelessness — and gives people a new beginning.”

The building demonstrates a commitment to permanent supportive housing, community preservation and green building design.

It is equipped with a green roof, high-efficiency insulation, energy-efficient appliances and fixtures, a geothermal HVAC system, rain gardens and native landscape. The energy- and resource- efficient building will help lower utility costs and manage the building’s impact on the environment and ensure its long-term durability.

Mercy Housing also plans to obtain a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating from the U.S. Green Building Council.

The development adds to the City’s portfolio of supportive SRO and family housing. Since 1988, the City of Chicago has invested more than $280 million to create or preserve 5,900 units of supportive housing. The Plan to End Homelessness has another 3,200 units of supportive housing that utilize existing rental units.

“Our strategy to build new, preserve existing and use privately owned units is the key to our success in the Plan to End Homelessness,” Daley said.

The new building is made possible through city, state and federal resources.

The City donated the land, contributed $2 million in TIF assistance and over $1.2 million in low-income housing tax credits, which generated $11.3 million in equity for the project.

In addition, this year, the City will provide more than $2.1 million in HUD funds for rental subsidies and $150,000 in Skyway funds for supportive services.

The Illinois Housing Development Authority contributed $2 million in HOME funds and $255,000 in donations tax credit equity. Other investments include a number of energy grants.

“We are adding another high-quality, environmentally friendly building to our city.
The successful completion of this building is another step toward ending the isolation of homelessness and public housing. It is a part of our efforts to create sustainable communities for a brighter future and it is a beautiful place to call home,” Daley said.

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