2015 Housing Development Success Story
“NCALL has been a key part of developing Our Lady of Grace Apartments by providing the expertise and technical assistance we need to be successful.” Mary Lynn Owen, Felician Services Senior Ministry Advisor and Board Member of Our Lady of Grace Home
The demand for affordable housing in New Castle County, Delaware is high. Market research shows that waiting lists for affordable apartments in the area are lengthy, with few new communities in the works. Our Lady of Grace Apartments, a new 60-unit affordable rental community located in Newark, Delaware, will address this need.
The project is being developed by Our Lady of Grace Home, Inc. and Felician Sisters of North America with developer services from NCALL. Our Lady of Grace Apartments received a 2015 Low Income Housing Tax
Credit award from Delaware State Housing Authority generating over $8 million in equity for these family units, and a HOME loan commitment from New Castle County’s Department of Community Services that brings an additional $150,000 in funding.
Our Lady of Grace Apartments will serve households with incomes at or below 60% of the Area Median Income. Twelve units will be handicapped accessible and six units will house special populations. The complex sits on a 180 acre site of the former Our Lady of Grace Home orphanage, a facility run by the Felician Sisters that served the area’s most vulnerable children from the 1940’s until its closing in 2009. In its later years the facility transitioned to a group home for children. Today, the Felician Sisters continue their vital role in the community through the development of this affordable rental housing community. According to Mary Lynn Owen, Felician Services Ministry Advisor and Board Member, “The development of Our Lady of Grace Apartments is an opportunity for the Felician Sisters to continue their mission work by providing safe, quality affordable housing for families. NCALL has been a key part of developing Our Lady of Grace Apartments by providing the expertise and technical assistance we need to be successful.”
The beautifully designed apartments consist of five units in each of 12 two-story buildings featuring stone fronts and covered porches. The units are comprised of one, two and three-bedroom apartments or townhouses. The amenities will include a focus on green and sustainable design features including increased insulation, energy efficient heating and cooling systems, highly efficient appliances and lighting, and low-flow water fixtures. The units will be spacious, with finishes equivalent to market rate rental housing in the Newark area. The community’s design layout includes an accessible walkway to a bus stop and transit line connecting residents to transportation to local employers. Additional common area amenities include a new community building with management office, maintenance facilities, community room with kitchen and common laundry facility, outdoor green space, tot lot and parking. Supportive services will be available to all households free of charge and may include classes on healthy food preparation, nutrition, and community gardening.
The apartments are scheduled to begin construction in 2016 with completion and full operations expected to occur in 2017.
NCALL's housing development team provides its expertise to nonprofit organizations seeking to develop and/or preserve affordable housing that serves low-income families, the elderly, and farmworkers.
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