Redevelopment of Affordable Housing Begins in Western MA

First Resource Cos. has started work on extensive renovations at the 173-unit Maple Commons Apartments in downtown Springfield, Mass. The goal of the renovation is to preserve the property as affordable housing.

The property renovations include building envelope repairs, window replacement, roof replacement, boiler replacement, HVAC upgrades and apartment upgrades. First Resource Cos. will also install a security system that will include 150 cameras over two city blocks that will be connected directly to the Springfield Police Department.

In recent years, the neighborhood has been hit hard by crime, thus the need for the cameras, as well as increasing the visibility of management, according to First Resource Cos. president Gordon Pulsifer. “In addition, we will be adding video intercom systems for all apartments, which will provide additional security for residents.”

MassHousing provided a $21 million bridge loan with a 2.4 percent interest rate to help finance the project. Also, the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) allocated a total of $35 million in state and federal low-income housing tax credits to Maple Commons.

The transaction received an allocation of federal historic tax credits and HOME financing from DHCD and the City of Springfield as well. All 173 apartments at Maple Commons are covered by a federal Section 8 Housing Assistance Payment Contract (HAP) through 2021, and First Resource Cos. plans to extend the HAP contract for an additional 20 years.

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