SPRINGFIELD – On behalf of the administration of Governor Pat Quinn, Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) officials today celebrated the groundbreaking of two federal stimulus-funded affordable housing developments in Central Illinois. IHDA invested $7.5 million in federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds to build Nehemiah Homes Phase II and an additional $710,000 loan from the Illinois Affordable Housing Trust Fund for the Golden Oaks Senior Apartments. The two developments will create 62 affordable rental homes for low-income families and seniors in Springfield, Litchfield and Hillsboro.
“Without the federal stimulus funding, the financial stability of many affordable housing projects like Nehemiah Homes Phase II and the Golden Oaks Senior Apartments would be in jeopardy,” said Gloria L. Materre, IHDA Executive Director. “Governor Quinn understands that every job counts and every industry must do its part to help create jobs and revitalize the economy. With an estimated 35 jobs to be created from these projects, this underlines the Governor’s commitment to getting Illinois residents back to work and affordable housing construction back on track.”
As the State’s housing finance agency, IHDA allocated the stimulus funds to help revive the building plans for the two housing developments. The agency originally invested federal tax credits in both projects in July and December 2009, which would have generated millions of dollars in private equity for the developments. However, financing fell through when the country’s economic recession caused the value of tax credits in the financial markets to plunge. The stimulus funding has helped bridge the financing gap and allowed for construction to begin.
Nehemiah Homes Phase II will be built on scattered sites in Springfield’s Eastside neighborhood and will continue work started by Phase I to restore areas damaged by the March 2006 tornadoes. Phase II will consist of 30 single-family homes offering a selection of two, three, and four-bedrooms.
Tenants must earn at or below 60 percent of the area median income. For a four-person household in Sangamon County, the limit is $39,960, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) guidelines. Monthly rents will range from $437 to $837 depending on unit size and income and will include most utilities. For leasing information, contact the Springfield Housing Authority, who will manage the property, at 217-753-5757.
Phase I of the Nehemiah Homes development was completed in 2008 and consists of 20 single-family homes also built at scattered locations in the Eastside neighborhood.
“Nehemiah Homes Phase I is completely leased up and maintains a waiting list. This demonstrates a genuine need for decent, affordable housing in the area. Windsor Development Group is grateful to the Governor and IHDA for committing stimulus funding to help jumpstart Nehemiah Homes II and the Golden Oaks Senior Apartments,” said Mike Niehaus, President of Windsor Development Group, Inc., the co-developer of both projects.
The Golden Oaks Senior Apartments will consist of 32 one and two-story townhomes, divided equally between the Litchfield and Hillsboro sites. The one-bedroom townhomes will replace former public housing developments: Hull Homes in Hillsboro and the Ash-Arnette Elderly Housing Apartments in Litchfield.
Tenants must be over the age of 62 and earn at or below 60 percent of the area median income ($22,980 for individuals in Montgomery County). Monthly rents will be set at approximately $490 including most utilities but residents will also receive a rental subsidy. For leasing information, contact the Montgomery County Housing Authority at 217-532-3672.
In addition, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) contributed energy grants to both developments. Nehemiah Homes Phase II received a $120,750 grant and Golden Oaks received an $84,000 grant to install energy efficient windows, insulation, lighting, and appliances.