The Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) announced today that Knoxville’s Community Development Corporation has been awarded $1,015,957 in annual tax credits for a ten year period for the development of affordable housing in the Five Points community.
“These low-income housing tax credits will allow us to move forward with our master plan for redevelopment in the Five Points neighborhood,” said KCDC Executive Director and CEO Art Cate. “The first phase of the plan is a 90-unit elderly/disabled housing development. The tax credits allow us to pull the private sector in as partners to improve the quality of affordable housing in East Knoxville.”
KCDC applied in January for the 2015 low-income housing tax credits through THDA. The state issues a limited number of tax credits each year for new affordable housing construction or substantial renovation of exiting units. Recipients are selected through a highly competitive process based on state and local needs for the type of affordable housing, as well as scoring the qualifications of the applicant. KCDC’s Five Points application received the maximum score of 100 points.
“With the approval of these tax credits, we plan to break ground early next year,” Cate said.
The complex, which will be exclusively for elderly and disabled residents, will be located at the corner of Bethel Avenue and McConnell Street and will be the first phase of the Five Points Master Plan created through a series of community input meetings that were completed in January 2014. Design plans for a three-story building to include 84 one-bedroom units and six two-bedroom units are being completed. The property will have two elevators and community space, including a meeting room, computer stations and laundry facilities. The site will also offer an outdoor green space with picnic pavilion and a dog park.
“Getting the community’s input and buy-in is critical to the successful revitalization of Five Points,” Cate said. “During the Master Plan development process, KCDC and our planning team met with local stakeholders and residents for more than a year to gather input on the type of housing needed in the community. We also wanted the development to fit seamlessly with the existing neighborhood.”
With the approval of these tax credits, we will go back to the community to finalize the designs for the housing property that reflect their input. The total development cost for the property is expected to be approximately $10 million.”
KCDC and master plan architect, Johnson Architecture, will hold a public meeting to view the designs in late July at the Walter P. Taylor Boys & Girls Club.
The 90 new units of affordable housing were approved this year by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for the rental demonstration assistance (RAD) program. This program transitions units from the HUD public housing program to the HUD multifamily Project Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) program.
The RAD program allows housing authorities to leverage assets to secure funding as needed for construction or renovations. KCDC plans to transition additional public housing units under the RAD program to multi-family PBRA.
“The RAD program is key to our strategy to continue to transform affordable housing in Five Points and throughout our Knox County footprint,” KCDC Board Chair Dan Murphy said. “The program gives us greater flexibility in our funding sources, which is crucial in the current climate of decreasing federal funding.”
The Five Points Master Plan is a multiphase, multiyear project with a total cost of approximately $85 million. KCDC is nearly four years into the Five Points revitalization and already has invested more than $21 million in new affordable housing through the Residences at Eastport and infill housing.
The City of Knoxville has dedicated $8 million over a 10-year period to the project, and Mayor Madeline Rogero reaffirmed the city’s commitment to the project in her annual budget address.
KCDC is the housing authority and redevelopment agency for Knoxville. Since 1936, KCDC has been dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for the citizens of Knoxville. For more information, visit http://www.kcdc.org.