Forty affordable apartments will soon be available to low-income residents in Cleveland thanks to Aspen Place, a 49,000-square-foot new-construction development in the heart of the Cleveland EcoVillage.
Developer Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization (DSCDO) and funders Enterprise Community Partners (Enterprise) and the Ohio Housing Finance Agency were joined by local officials earlier this month as they held a ground-breaking for the development, which will serve households making between 30 and 60 percent of Area Median Income. Construction on the $10.5 million development will begin in September of 2017, and is scheduled to be completed in September of 2018.
Located immediately adjacent to the W. 65th Street Rapid Transit Station, Aspen Place is an example of Transit-Oriented Development, a nationwide movement to ensure people living in affordable homes have easy access to public transit. The project has formed a partnership with the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (GCRTA) to provide free transit/bus passes for residential tenants in the development.
“Our objective is, and always has been creating and maintaining affordable housing in our neighborhoods,” said Anya Kulcsar, Director of Real Estate Development, DSCDO. “Part of that mission has to involve doing our part to ensure utility costs stay affordable as well.”
In addition to being a model for transit-oriented development, DSCDO aims to achieve a near-50 percent reduction in energy demand compared to the minimum Ohio Building Code requirements. DSCDO will use performance management systems and resident engagement to optimize the building systems and build awareness about the cost saving features available in the building.
“The opportunity to create new homes that are both green and close to transit drew Enterprise to Aspen Place,” said Mark McDermott, vice president and Ohio market leader, Enterprise. “As one of the first newly constructed multifamily buildings to come to Cleveland in many years, Aspen Place will bring new life to a great community and set a standard for development that we hope others in the area will replicate in the years to come.”
Aspen Place was one of seven developments in the country to receive Enterprise’s inaugural pre-development design grant, which kick-started a design competition among several architecture firms and elevated the quality of the affordable development’s design. DSCDO also worked closely with Enterprise Rose Architectural Fellowship alum Erick Rodriguez to strengthen the organization’s ability to push the envelope on green affordable housing and neighborhood sustainability projects.
The building will be owned, developed, and managed by DSCDO. Enterprise Community Loan Fund and Enterprise Community Investment, both subsidiaries of Enterprise, provided $250,000 in predevelopment capital and $8.7 million in equity, respectively. Other partners and providers of project funding include KeyBank, the Ohio Housing Finance Agency, the City of Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, and the Finance Fund. Marous Brothers Construction will serve as the design builder.