Low-income senior housing on East Market Street was part of Warsaw’s Stellar application in 2016. Though the city didn’t win the state award, the city and The Englewood Group, Indianapolis, are still working together to move the project forward. Shown is a rendering from last year of what the senior housing building could look like. Artwork provided.
Low-income senior housing on East Market Street was part of Warsaw’s Stellar application in 2016. Though the city didn’t win the state award, the city and The Englewood Group, Indianapolis, are still working together to move the project forward. Shown is a rendering from last year of what the senior housing building could look like. Artwork provided.

Though Warsaw was not named a Stellar community by the state in 2016, the Redevelopment Commission is hoping to move forward with one of its intended projects – low-income senior housing on East Market Street.

Partnering with the city is The Englewood Group, Indianapolis. “We’re pursuing grant application through (Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority) to continue with that Market Street project,” City Planner Jeremy Skinner told the commission Monday.

Skinner asked the Redevelopment Commission Monday to approve a resolution, a letter describing the project and a letter committing $150,000 to the project by the commission to get the low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) application moving forward. The board unanimously approved all items.





The resolution allows the Commission to purchase, demolish and dispose of blighted parcels, Skinner said.

The second item is a letter stating what that property is and that the Redevelopment Commission agrees to dispose of that property, he said.

The project consists of about 65 new, affordable senior housing units that will be developed on Market Street, just north of Fribley Field.

“It’s property (805 E. Market St.) that we acquired from Habitat for Humanity, they had five lots there. And then that property was going to be combined with what used to be the old gas station. Two parcels are owned by Dr. Rhoads. Englewood is in the process of making contact with both of those to try to get some site control on those properties as we proceed with the application,” Skinner said.

A narrative summary of the proposed senior housing project says the building “will be an elevator-served three-story structure with 40 one-bedroom units and 25 two-bedroom units with a total of 11 different floor plans. ... All units will be rented to households at or below 60 percent area median income rents (AMIR). Twenty-five percent of the units’ rents will be at 30 percent AMIR, an additional 25 percent of the units at 50 percent or less AMIR and the remaining 50 percent of the units at 60 percent AMIR.”

The planned $11.3 million project would be primarily financed with equity through 9 percent low-income housing tax credits, with additional financing through first mortgage debt, according to the narrative summary.

City support is included and is factored into the financing. Englewood is investing $10 million in the project.

Skinner told the commission he did not get the third item, the letter committing $150,000, completed, but he asked them to approve it and the funds.

The money will come out of the redevelopment’s general fund, which had already been set aside as part of the Stellar application.

“As part of the (LIHTC) application, the state gives you points. Some of those points are based on what the city is doing to contribute to the project. We’re going to be contributing properties to the project, the Habitat properties we purchased, and they’ll be appraised and that value will be added; $150,000, if you approve the letter; and then tax abatements. That lump of money will give us ‘X’ amount of points per that application,” Skinner explained.

Whoever gets the most points gets awarded the projects, he said. He later added that 12 to 15 projects are awarded annually.

“So we’re trying to get as many points as we can to get this project underway next year,” Skinner said.

The Englewood Group Vice President of Real Estate Development Brian R. Pozen told the commission, “We’ve just been thankful to work with the city. It’s unfortunate that Stellar didn’t come through.”

On the application, Pozen said the state “is maximizing points as 10 percent of the total development costs, is what they’re wanting to see for max points for communities. We’ve acknowledged that we won’t get there on this one, but to be most competitive, we want to get as much as we can to show that there’s an investment in the property for the state to be funded.”

Mayor Joe Thallemer clarified, “These properties that are listed in this resolution, those are the properties on Market Street. The old gas station property and Dr. Rhoads’ property, we’re not asking to call blighted or anything like that. These are strictly the Market Street properties we’re considering right now. And they’re all, as Jeremy mentioned, properties we’ve acquired from Habitat. I think we exchanged with them and gave them different properties.”

He said city doesn’t have “control” over the old gas station and Rhoads properties and they’re not blighted.

Thallemer said the senior housing was a great project for Stellar, and the city is thankful that Englewood wanted to come back and go through IHCDA to see if it could get the low-income housing tax credits.

He mentioned the Little Crow Lofts, which are being converted to affordable apartments, not senior housing, was a similar project through the IHCDA and that project is turning out great.

“We’re excited that we have the opportunity to pursue this project through the IHCDA, along with the developer; and getting some commitment of property and some money is important to the whole process. It’s probably safe to say that this project would be contingent on the IHCDA award,” Thallemer said.

At the city council meeting Monday, the council approved a resolution designating the property as an Economic Revitalization Area. It had to be designated as such in order for the council to determine at a public hearing Oct. 16 whether to give the senior housing a tax abatement.

“I would be asking for a tax abatement on a $10 million senior housing project on Market Street,” Skinner told the council.

“All of this is contingent on a grant application that would a part of the IHCDA. Assuming that we get the IHCD, the Redevelopment would allocate the property that it had acquired from Habitat to go toward this project as well as some economic incentive. The council would be granting a tax abatement. They (Englewood) would be making the $10 million investment and receive the IHCDA credits, assuming that they’re awarded the credits.”