Gorman & Co. has teamed with Grace Community Church of the Valley to create 50 units of affordable family housing, a new thrift store, a job training center, and a community center.
The church, which has had a presence in Tempe, Ariz., for more than 35 years, had wanted to develop its aging thrift store on a two-acre site along the new Valley Metro Light Rail Line. It had previously started the process with market-rate organizations but realized their interests weren’t closely aligned.
“When we were introduced to them, there was more synergy in mission between us and the church,” says Brian Swanton, Gorman’s Arizona market president.
In exchange for redeveloping the site, the church contributed the property to Gorman through a $1-per-year, 65-year land lease. The church also has the option to purchase the project at Year 15.
The church is providing social services for the 15-year compliance period, including an after-school program and parenting classes. The 13,000-square-foot thrift store also will include job training and placement services for the residents and the surrounding community.
The $15.1 million development was financed with low-income housing tax credit equity provided by JPMorgan Chase through syndicator RBC Capital Markets. Stearns Bank was the construction lender, and Utah Community Reinvestment Corp. the permanent lender.