Continuing to expand its housing preservation work in the Chicago market, Preservation of Affordable Housing (POAH) Inc. today announced two new senior-focused housing transactions in changing neighborhoods.
In Rogers Park on the far north side, POAH closed on its purchase of the Levy House Apartments, a 57-unit building for seniors at 1221 West Sherwin Street. The acquisition is POAH’s second since entering the north side market last fall, when it became co-owner of 11 buildings in Uptown with the Voice of the People.
POAH recently closed on financing to renovate and extend the affordability at Father Martin Farrell House Apartments in East Woodlawn, which it purchased in 2019. Located within walking distance of Jackson Park and the Obama Presidential Center at 1415 East 65th Street, Farrell House is a 59-unit, five-story elevator apartment building for seniors and disabled individuals.
“For the past several years we’ve expanded our portfolio to help ensure affordable housing throughout the Chicago area,“ said Bill Eager, Senior Vice President, POAH Midwest . “These two properties – one across from the planned Obama Center and the other in the lakefront community of Rogers Park– are examples of our preservation efforts in changing neighborhoods.”
Farrell House’s amenities include laundry facilities, a computer lab, a community room with a pool table and piano, and on-site maintenance and management. Residents also have access to off-street parking and can walk to CTA bus stops and the Metra Electric commuter rail line. As with all POAH apartments in Woodlawn, the residents of Farrell House can access resources and services at the Woodlawn Resource Center.
POAH’s acquisition of Levy House from the Council for Jewish Elderly was assisted by the Chicago Housing Authority and the City of Chicago and financed through PNC Bank. Last fall, the city council approved $3.75 million to assist with the purchase, renovation and updating of the 70-year-old building.
POAH will take over property management through its affiliate, POAH Communities, and begin renovation of the property in late 2021. The work will include installation of a new energy-efficient heating and cooling system and modernizing the one-bedroom apartments and the fitness and community facilities.
“We’re excited about this opportunity to preserve affordable housing in Rogers Park,” said Eager. “It’s a great property and our first in this community. I want to thank the CHA and the City of Chicago, because without their involvement, it would have been virtually impossible to keep this building affordable.”
“It is more important than ever to ensure housing stability for low-income Chicagoans, which is why we will continue to expand our investments to serve communities across the city, said Tracey Scott, Chicago Housing Authority CEO.The CHA is providing $3 million in funding and 56 project-based vouchers that will allow for market rents without increasing what current residents pay.
"I would like to thank POAH for working so closely with the CHA, the Jane Addams Senior Caucus, and our office to purchase the Levy House,” said 49TH Ward Alderman Maria Haddon. “This acquisition ensures that 100% of the units will be affordable for residents currently living there. In a time of so much uncertainty, it is critical that we protect our most vulnerable neighbors."
Beginning with its first development in Woodlawn in 2008, POAH now has developed or acquired more than 2,100 affordable apartments in 11 Chicago neighborhoods and two suburbs.