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Mar. 7, 2014

Funding in Place for Monastery to Seniors Conversion in Chicago

By Dees Stribling, Contributing Writer

Senior Suites of Norwood ParkChicago—Senior Lifestyle Corp. has obtained additional funding for a multifamily redevelopment in the Norwood Park district on the Northwest Side of Chicago in the form of Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTCs) provided by Boston Capital. Other sources of redevelopment funding for the $24 million project include a loan approved by the City of Chicago last year, as well as state grants and historic preservation tax credits.

The project involves the adaptive reuse of the former Passionist Monastery at 5700 N. Harlem Ave., which was originally built in 1910, as well as a new construction three-story addition. The Passonist Brothers is a Catholic religious order, and the building was once headquarters for its Holy Cross Province, which includes most of the western United States. The order, whose size has decreased in recent decades, moved out of the ornate brick building in Norwood Park a few years ago for facilities in Park Ridge, Ill., and Louisville.

When complete, the property — which will be called Senior Suites of Norwood Park — will include 84 units, offering studios and one- and two-bedroom units, as well as dining facilities, a library and fitness center. The existing monastery building will house 30 of the apartments, while the other 54 will be in the addition. The property also will feature gardens, walking paths, and a chapel.

Eighty of the apartments will be for residents 62 and older making 60 percent or less of the area’s median income, which is about $37,900. Residents will benefit from monthly housekeeping at no extra charge, complimentary laundry, scheduled van transportation, and affordable meal services. The development is also located within close proximity to the Norwood Park Senior Center, which offers daily hot lunch programs and provides an exercise facility, library, reading and conference room, a computer lab and skills training.

Chicago-based Senior Lifestyle Corp. has more than 100 properties in its portfolio, operating more than 12,000 units nationwide, both market rate and affordable. Thus far, Boston Capital has invested in more than 3,500 units of affordable housing in Illinois.

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