Construction has begun on a development that will bring 60 affordable homes plus an on-site early learning center to families in Columbus, Ohio.
Co-developers Healthy Homes, affiliated with Community Development for All People (CD4AP) and Nationwide Children’s Hospital, and affordable housing leader Woda Cooper Cos. hosted a large outdoor ceremonial groundbreaking event March 21 for the development.
Lockbourne Greene will transform a vacant and blighted Columbus Land Bank property into an amenity-rich, energy-efficient community. The three-story building, with 12 one-, 40 two-, and eight three-bedroom apartments, is being built to meet LEED Silver green building standards.
Located on Columbus’ South Side, all apartment homes will be affordable for families earning between 40% and 80% of the area median income, or $23,480 to $46,960 for a single person and $33,520 to $67,040 for a family of four. Rents are projected at $669 to $999 per month, depending on income category and the size of the apartment.
“Like nearly every city, suburb, and rural community across the country, Columbus lacks enough affordable housing,” said Jeffrey J. Woda, principal of Woda Cooper Cos. “Many workers in essential jobs, such as store clerks, medical workers and caregivers, public safety officers, or hospitality workers, have difficulty finding affordable housing that meets their daily living needs and is accessible to jobs, transportation, schools, and services. Lockbourne Greene will provide a new high-quality option that combines housing and added services in a vital neighborhood.”
The development will have an on-site management office, a resident fitness center, and a community room that residents can use for social gatherings. The property is within walking distance of many amenities, including an elementary school, a grocery, a post office, restaurants, and other retail stores and services.
In addition, an early learning center for children between 6 months and 5 years old will be operated by SproutFive.
Gretchen West, executive director of Healthy Homes, emphasized the positive impact a home makes for a family. “A family’s overall health is absolutely impacted by social determinants such as the house they live in, availability of employment and education, and access to health care,” she said. “Breaking ground on Lockbourne Greene is another step toward affordable and equitable resources for families to live their healthiest lives. We are proud to be a partner and proud to serve the South Side community.”
Financing for the $15.8 million community comes from a diverse mix of public, private, and nonprofit sources. Equity financing was provided through federal low-income housing tax credits allocated by the Ohio Housing Finance Agency, which also issued multifamily housing revenue bonds for the project.
Bank of America invested $7.8 million in the tax credits and supplied a construction loan. “Bank of America shares Ohio’s vision for a better future and is proud to have a role in ensuring access to affordable housing is available for our entire community. Developments like Lockbourne Greene will create tremendous opportunities, stabilize families, and enrich all of Columbus,” said Kelly D’Ambrosia, president, Bank of America Columbus.
Other funding sources include permanent first mortgage from Cedar Rapids Bank & Trust. Healthy Homes provided a second permanent mortgage financed through a grant received from the city of Columbus. The Affordable Housing Trust for Columbus & Franklin County provided a bridge loan. Lockbourne Greene also benefits from taxable lease revenue bonds issued by Columbus Franklin County Finance Authority.
General contractor is Woda Construction, and PCI Design Group is architect. Woda Cooper Cos.’ management division will oversee leasing and maintenance. A second phase is proposed to create seven single-family homes developed by Healthy Homes.