Armstrong Place Rental and For-Sale Residences Completed
- Jun 13, 2011
San Francisco–Armstrong Place, an unusual affordable housing development in San Francisco, has been completed. Unusual because the developers–affiliates of the nonprofit Bridge Housing–included two components in the project: Armstrong Place Senior Housing, a rental community for seniors, and Armstrong Townhomes, which offers below-market-rate homeownership for first-time homebuyers.
Armstrong Place Senior Housing provides 116 affordable apartments along with landscaped courtyard areas, a community room, and 7,600 square feet of community services and retail shops. Twenty-three of the apartments are set aside for formerly homeless seniors participating in San Francisco’s Direct Access to Housing program. These residents are eligible for intensive social services provided by the Providence Foundation of San Francisco, the goal of which is to enable them to transition to independent living.
Armstrong Townhomes offers 124 affordable homes for first-time homebuyers, with more than 80 percent of the units sold or under contract. Common amenities include a fitness room, common green space with community gardens and children’s play area, and a community lounge. Each two-, three- and four-bedroom unit features stainless steel appliances, a dishwasher, Caesarstone countertops and a washer/dryer.
The idea behind putting the two kinds of housing together is that it will benefit both the senior renters and the homeowners. For one thing, pairing the senior apartments with a family community helps prevent the seniors from feeling isolated, according to Bridge Housing. The townhomes, for their part, provide an opportunity for families to stay in San Francisco, a notoriously expensive housing market.
As par for the course when putting together such a development, the financing was complex. “The financing sources utilized for Armstrong are all familiar to us, but the fact that we used so many sources made for some complexity,” Bridge Housing Senior Project Manager Kevin Griffith tells MHN. “We had funding from the federal government, the state of California, local redevelopment agency funds, city rent subsidy funding, Federal Home Loan Bank AHP funds, tax credit and bond authority regulatory oversight, and a tax credit investor.”
Lining up the varying regulatory requirements of all of these sources took a great deal of coordination, and will continue to be a challenge for Bridge Housing’s asset managers going forward, notes Griffith. “But the project was able to obtain financing from this array of funders because it addresses so many different housing and community development needs,” he adds.