By Bridgett Lynn

Charlottesville Tomorrow

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A project to provide housing for the homeless in downtown Charlottesville has moved one step closer to reality.

On Friday, officials with

Virginia Supportive Housing

(VSH) announced that a proposed 60 unit

single room occupancy facility

(SRO) has been awarded low-income housing tax credits by the Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA).


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Download 20100615-SRO

“It’s $529,000 [in tax credits] over ten years, so it’s really [over] $5 million in credits,” said Kathy Talley, deputy Executive Director of Virginia Supportive Housing. Talley’s organization will be building and managing the facility which will be known as

The Crossings at Fourth and Preston

.

“[The tax credits] are a vehicle, probably the primary vehicle, by which affordable housing projects are funded not only here in the commonwealth of Virginia but throughout the country,” said Charlottesville Mayor

Dave Norris

.






Charlottesville Mayor Dave Norris


The project has received significant support from the City of Charlottesville. VSH received $125,000 in start-up funds

from City Council in 2009

to find a location to build the SRO facility somewhere within the City limits. Since then, Council has also given $1.6 million towards purchasing property from Region 10.

The

approval from the Charlottesville Planning Commission

last year to change the City’s zoning ordinance to allow for SRO facilities to be built within city limits has allowed the project to be located on 401 Fourth St. N.W. VSH is required to provide on-site security and support services.

“It will be a kind of permanent supportive housing that has a proven track record of reducing homelessness in communities that have built these kinds of facilities,” said Norris.

VSH said the tax credits will go a long way toward helping the organization raise the $6.3 million required to build the facility.

“The Virginia Community Development Corporation has agreed to be our syndicator,” said Talley. “They will syndicate the credits to translate the $500,000 plus of low income tax credits. That translates into over $4 million of hard cold cash,” said Talley. She added VSH is hoping to raise additional money through foundations, and is already having some success.

“We are thrilled to be able to announce today also a $250,000 grant from the Perry Foundation,” Talley said. “That’s a matching grant, so we have already applied to several sources in order to match those funds.”

Norris announced that the project is expected to open within the next eighteen months.

“There’s still a couple of other little regulatory issues that have to be addressed, but we very likely will be able to break ground this fall and start construction on this project,” said Norris.




View Larger Map


Future site location for The Crossings at Fourth and Preston

Source: Google Maps



TIMELINE FOR PODCAST:

    00:45 – Mayor Dave Norris talks about Crossings at Fourth and Preston

    05:05 – Cathy Talley of Virginia Supportive Housing talks about tax credits

    08:24 – Norris talks about history of the project

    08:44 –

    Ed Bain

    of the

    Thomas Jefferson Area Coalition for the Homeless

    talks about support for the project

    10:47 – Norris describes project housing units

    12:22 – Questions from the press

    22:10 – Conclusion