WinnCompanies Closes Financing to Develop Mixed-Income Housing Development| Housing Finance Magazine
WinnCompanies announced that it has completed the financing necessary to convert two vacant, contiguous parcels of land in Lowell, Massachusetts into the company’s fifth mixed-income, labor-force development.
WinnDevelopment will upgrade the 1.14-acre site known as Plots 8 and 9 with two five-story buildings comprising 125 apartments and 5,000 square feet of commercial space. Located in Lowell’s Hamilton Canal Innovation District, it will be a true mixed income project. 54 apartments for workers are rented at 100% of the area median income (AMI). 39 units will be affordable up to 60% of the AMI; and 32 apartments are rented at market prices.
“This project will advance our goal of increasing the availability of quality housing that is affordable for all income levels,” said Larry Curtis, President and Managing Partner of WinnDevelopment. “It will be a true mixed-income community, offering a mix of affordable, middle-income and marketable units that support local and state residential goals, as well as Lowell’s desire to stimulate downtown activity. This strong public-private partnership provides a model for how we can expand access to quality housing in underserved communities in the future. WinnCompanies is committed to promoting social justice and economic opportunity through our mixed income development projects. ”
The $ 38.3 million development will be funded with equity generated through the purchase of low-income residential property tax credits by Bank of America. a Bank of America home loan; an initial mortgage and workforce housing fund from MassHousing; Funded by the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development through the State Affordable Housing Trust Fund, Housing Stabilization Fund, and HOME Program; Funding from Community Economic Development Assistance Corp. in the form of the Facility Consolidation Fund and the Community-Based Housing program; Opportunity Zone investment and developer capital from WinnCompanies; and funds from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and Mass Save, both dedicated to advancing energy efficiency and clean technology.
The City of Lowell is supporting the project with funds from the HOME program, exemptions to finance the city center tax increase, and infrastructure investments in and around the 51,000 square meter site.
The new development is being carried out along with four other WinnDevelopment workforce housing developments completed in the past two years, including two in Boston, one in Quincy, Massachusetts, and one in Rochester, New York
The project is important in several ways. The Hamilton Canal Innovation District is a collection of 17 packages slated to transform the main gate of downtown Lowell. WinnCompanies’ new apartment community is located half a mile from the Lowell Connector and has direct access to Route 495 and Route 3. It will be adjacent to a new car park with 900 spaces due for completion in October to accommodate both businesses in the Downtown as well as downtown to use Located near the Lowell Justice Center’s new regional courthouse, which is expected to open later this summer. Residents are also within walking distance of downtown retail stores, a S-Bahn line, and bus routes served by the Gallagher Intermodal Terminal.
The complex in lots 8 and 9 will be designed, built and operated to meet stringent energy efficiency goals, including certification by Energy Star Homes and Enterprise Green Communities. Critical Incentive Funding, provided through the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and the MassSave Residential New Construction Program, will support additional construction costs related to the project’s HVAC systems and building envelope design that are designed and selected to reduce carbon emissions and long-term energy efficiency of the project to reduce gates.
The environmentally conscious design and construction include highly efficient air source heat pumps for heating and cooling, powerful details of the building envelope, including robust exterior wall and roof insulation, Energy Star windows and appliances, LED lighting and balanced ventilation with energy recovery for healthy indoor air quality and maximum efficiency. Final certification for Enterprise Green Communities will come after construction after rigorous inspections, performance testing, and reviews by Boston-based nonprofit New Ecology.
Adam Stein, Senior Vice President of WinnDevelopment, who was instrumental in bringing the project to life, and Project Leader Matthew Curtin will lead the development team, which includes Keith Construction, ICON Architecture, the landscape designer Copley Wolff Design Group and interior designer Wolf in Sheep Design, Civil Engineer Vanasse Hangen Brustlin and civil engineer Odeh Engineers. Deirdre Robinson, partner at Sullivan & Worcester, is acting as legal advisor to the project.
The company acquired the packages on March 3 and immediately began preparing the site to take advantage of the favorable weather. The construction work is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2022.
Lowell hosts the largest single concentration of real estate owned by WinnCompanies in the United States. In addition to lots 8 and 9, the award-winning multi-family real estate development and management company owns four other developments in Lowell: Loft 27, Counting House Lofts, the Apartments at Boott Mills and Boott Mills West. In total, since 2005, the company has converted more than 949,000 square meters of free mill space into 572 residential houses and condominiums and more than 7,300 square meters of space for local businesses. More than 100 executives and members of the company’s accounting team work from the regional headquarters in Boott Mills.