Affordable housing for seniors got a boost in Ohio at the end of the year with the grand openings of two communities by Woda Cooper Cos.—the 54-unit Fairwood Commons in Columbus and the 50-unit Audubon Crossing in Dayton.
Fairwood Commons marks Woda Cooper’s first foray into Passive House design. The development features superior insulation and air tightness with high-performance windows and siting orientation to reduce heating and cooling consumption and utility costs. It will be Ohio’s first multifamily community to be certified by the Passive Housing Institute US and is also expected to achieve LEED Platinum certification.
The three-story building, which serves households living at 60% of the area median income (AMI) or less, includes one- and two-bedroom units with open-concept living spaces, Universal Design with several fully accessible units, and energy-efficient appliances. Additional amenities include a central laundry facility, a fitness center, a gazebo, and a dog park. Local nonprofits East Columbus Development Co. and LifeCare Alliance are providing supportive services.
“This property’s design and amenities enable senior residents to live independently, comfortably, and affordably,” says Joseph McCabe, vice president of development at Woda Cooper. “Fairwood Commons offers a much-needed age-in-place option, and we arranged for connections to supportive services residents can access as needed.”
The $11.6 million Fairwood Commons received an allocation of low-income housing tax credits (LIHTCs) from Ohio Housing Finance Agency (OHFA), with the equity provided by Ohio Capital Corporation for Housing. Additional support included a 15-year tax abatement from the city of Columbus, a bridge loan from the Affordable Housing Trust for Columbus and Franklin County, and a HOME loan from the city. Huntington National Bank was the construction lender.
Woda Cooper partnered with Greater Dayton Premier Management (GDPM) on Audubon Crossing, which is serving seniors 55 and older who earn at or below 60% of the AMI.
The development was designed to blend in with the existing Salem Crossing Hope VI community and marks GDPM’s final housing phase as part of its contribution to the redevelopment of the Old Dayton View neighborhood.
The energy-efficient community is expected to earn LEED Silver certification. It features one-and two-bedroom units, open-concept living spaces, and Energy Star appliances. Common areas include a community room with a kitchen, a fitness center, and a gazebo. Senior Resource Connection, located adjacent to the property, and GDPM’s Family Self-Sufficiency program will coordinate supportive services, such as in-home meal delivery, social activities, transportation, and connection to other agencies.
“GDPM appreciates Woda Cooper’s expertise in creating resident-friendly living spaces with desirable lifestyle amenities, and in green building design and construction methods,” says Jennifer Heapy, CEO of GDPM. “We are proud of our contribution to the transformation of Old Dayton View into a vibrant, mixed-income community, and we look forward to continued partnerships to make this and other communities a success.”
OHFA supported the $10 million development with an allocation of LIHTCs and permanent and other loans. CREA was the equity investor, and KeyBank provided the construction loan. In addition, the city of Dayton provided a HOME loan, and GDPM contributed Replacement Housing Funds.
For both developments, Woda Cooper affiliate PCI Design Group served as architect, Woda Construction was the general contractor, and SolDesign + Consulting served as sustainability advisor.