By Joshua Ayers, Senior Editor
Indianapolis—Timed appropriately to coincide with the 150th anniversary of President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, members of public and private organizations along with the City of Indianapolis held a ribbon cutting ceremony Tuesday to mark the opening of The Lincoln Apartments, a 75-unit supportive housing community that will serve homeless veterans.
The project, which is located about a mile from Roudebush VA Medical Center in Indianapolis, was the joint effort of multiple public and private organizations including the City of Indianapolis, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Indiana Brownfields Program, the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority (IHCDA) and Great Lakes Capital Fund (GLCF).
“The Lincoln Apartments are the most recent addition to Indianapolis’ list of successful public private partnerships,” says Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard. “This project represents the expansive neighborhood revitalization and clean-up effort that is happening all across the city. I am thankful for everyone involved for their work to honor our homeless military veterans with this project.”
The site, a former iron foundry brownfield located at 530 Holmes Avenue in Indianapolis, was remediated by the city with the help of the EPA and then donated for the project.
The Indiana Finance Authority defines a brownfield as a site as “a parcel of real estate that is abandoned or inactive or may not be operated at its appropriate use and on which expansion or redevelopment is complicated because of the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, a contaminant, petroleum, or a petroleum product that poses a risk to human health or the environment,” according to information listed on the State of Indiana Website.
“I am pleased that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency was able to help clean up this former foundry site—to get it ready to build these terrific apartments for veterans,” says Susan Hedman, EPA region 5 administrator. “EPA Brownfield grants, like the one used for The Lincoln Apartments, have been used by hundreds of cities and towns throughout the country to revitalize their communities.”
According to the community’s website, The Lincoln Apartments features several community areas including a multiple-station computer lab, multi-purpose room, a conference room and day lounge. The community also has private offices for use for one-on-one counseling services. The residences are offered in studio and one-bedroom floor plan options.
Funding for the project was came from a variety of sources that included $500,000 of HOME funds from the City of Indianapolis, $500,00 Affordable Housing Program Award from The Federal Home Loan Bank of Indianapolis, which is also the construction lender. The IHCDA allocated federal Rental Housing Tax Credits as well as $300,000 from the Indiana Affordable Housing and Community Development Fund. GLCF syndicated the purchase of tax credits that provided more than $10 million in equity for the project.
“Great Lakes Capital Fund is humbled to pay tribute to those who have served through the dedication of this beautiful home for veterans,” says Mark McDaniel, president and CEO of GLCF. “There is still plenty of work to be done in making sure veterans can enjoy the freedoms they fought and sacrificed so much for; but, today we recognize and celebrate Lincoln Apartments with residents, partners, and the entire Indianapolis community.”