Wednesday, May 9, 2012

'Dated and stark' St. Paul Village apts. now 'beautiful and well-appointed'

St. Paul Village, a community for low-income seniors at 5515 Madison Road in Madisonville, celebrated the completion of its 103-unit, $13 million first phase of renovations on May 1.

The 14-month project to turn around the dated and worn 1970s apartments, performed by the Model Group, includes not only new finishes, but new energy-efficient windows, new plumbing, and a new geothermal heating and cooling system. New elevators and ramps make the apartments more accessible.

And although the number of total units decreased by 21, the replacement of most of the efficiency units with one-bedroom units is expected to be more marketable. An additional 65 units will be renovated in the project's second phase.

The facility is co-owned by Episcopal Retirement Homes (ERH) and the Lutheran Benevolent Society.

"Our residents have experienced a change from dated, one-room efficiency apartments situated behind cinder block walls, stark but clean, long and noisy vinyl hallways, to beautiful and well-appointed one-bedroom apartments in a place they are very proud to call home," said Kathy Ison, vice president of Affordable Living and In-Home Services for ERH.

The City invested $1.75 million in federal HOME funding into the project. Other sources of funding include Low-Income Housing Tax Credits, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development mortgage packages, a Tax Credit Exchange Loan, a Tax Credit Assistance Program (TCAP) Loan, and other state and federal sources – ten sources of funding in all.

The funding package took seven years to assemble.

"Clearly, people have been patient," said Cincinnati City Manager Milton Dohoney. "They have been vigilant, they have been tenacious...and so, today is the culmination of a long-term vision and all of that work and determination to get it done."

St. Paul Village joins several development projects taking shape in the Madisonville neighborhood over the past couple of years, including a new office campus for Medpace, Madison Circle, the new Shroder High School and John P. Parker School, and planning for Madison Square, a new mixed-use development at Madison Road and Whetsel Avenue.

"We're pleased that our City leaders recognize the value of this Madisonville community, and were willing to invest here," Ison said.

"For those people who say that the City isn't doing anything in the neighborhoods, I don't know what to tell you," Dohoney said. "Just keep following us around. Maybe you'll catch on one day."

Photo courtesy of St. Paul Village.

Previous reading on BC:
More than $3.4M awarded for Ohio affordable housing development, assistance (3/17/11)
$1.76M HOME loan to aid St. Paul Village rehab (6/23/10)
Two Cincinnati projects win federal tax credits (7/7/09)