The former Buffalo Trunk Manufacturing facility has been converted into affordable housing for people who are in danger of or experiencing homelessness in Buffalo, N.Y.

Developed by Evergreen Health and Southern Tier Environments for Living, Evergreen Lofts is providing safe options for people who may face housing discrimination, such as chronically ill households and members of the LGBTQ community, as well as a network of supportive services.

“About half of the units are reserved for those struggling with chronic diseases and substance and mental health issues or folks struggling with financial and health-care issues,” says Raymond Ganoe, president and CEO of Evergreen Health. “There’s a huge need in Buffalo.”

The adaptive-reuse development, which was completed in July 2016, includes a mix of 56 one-, two-, and three-bedroom energy-efficient apartments, including six accessible to residents with mobility impairment and two accessible to residents with audio/visual impairment.

The five-story brick industrial warehouse, built in 1895 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2010, underwent masonry restoration to ensure it will last for many years to come. Loft-style apartments have open high ceilings, exposed brick and ductwork, and historically significant structural columns and beams.

In addition, the project was designed to comply with LEED for Homes standards, with Energy Star heating and cooling equipment, appliances, and light fixtures; water-conservation fixtures; and low- or no-VOC paints, primers, adhesives, and sealants.

Evergreen Health provides medical, supportive, and behavioral services to individuals and families living with a chronic illness or who are underserved by the health-care system. Residents can access counseling services, a food pantry, transportation services, and primary care. An on-site housing retention counselor assists residents with case management.

“Our goal is not just the housing component, but the overall physical and emotional health of the residents and elevating people out of poverty,” says Ganoe. “We’re not just putting Band-Aids on bullet holes.”

The $15.6 million development is financed with federal low-income housing tax credits and state and federal historic tax credits, with equity provided by National Equity Fund.