Af­ford­able se­nior liv­ing com­plex to open late 2011

The Covington News - - Front page - By Gabriel Khouli gkhouli@cov­

Many se­nior cit­i­zens in Newton County were strug­gling fi­nan­cially be­fore the eco­nomic down­turn ex­ac­er­bated their sit­u­a­tions. Many have been forced to live in sub­stan­dard hous­ing or move in with other fam­ily mem­bers.

The Har­ris­town Park Se­nior Liv­ing com­plex, be­ing built at the in­ter­sec­tion of Lee and Reynolds streets, is ex­pected to raise the liv­ing con­di­tions for dozens of lo­cal se­niors.

The $8.4 mil­lion af­ford­able liv­ing com­plex is be­ing funded by Af­ford­able Eq­uity Part­ners, which can of­fer af­ford­able liv­ing be­cause it re­ceives tax cred­its from the state.

Weather woes have de­layed con­struc­tion of the three-story, 60-unit fa­cil­ity, but Project Man­ager Car­rie Jar­rett said Tues­day that the build­ing is ex­pected to be fin­ished in the fourth quar­ter of 2011.

Three dif­fer­ent rents will be charged, depend­ing on in­come ranges, with a pro­jected one-bed­room rent around $390. Only se­niors who meet the low-in­come re­quire­ment will be ac­cepted at the com­plex. Res­i­dents must be 55 years of age or older, with in­come of less than $22,000 a year for one per­son.

The com­plex will have 12 one-bed­room, 36 twobed­room and 12 cot­tage-style units. The first floor of the com­plex will be de­voted to com­mu­nity fa­cil­i­ties, in­clud­ing a com­puter room, fit­ness cen­ter, game room, li­brary and quiet room. The fa­cil­ity will also

have a com­mu­nity gar­den, laun­dry room, two full-ser­vice kitchens for events, a pavil­ion and a walk­ing path.

It will also have full­time, on-site man­age­ment and 24-hour main­te­nance.

Jar­rett said Af­ford­able Eq­uity Part­ners chose Cov­ing­ton based on a fea­si­bil­ity study of the area. While area hous­ing au­thor­i­ties have his­tor­i­cally pro­vided af­ford­able hous­ing, Jar­rett said the U.S. Depart­ment of Hous­ing and Ur­ban Devel­op­ment no longer reg­u­larly funds brickand-mor­tar projects.

“That’s why (gov­ern­ments and) au­thor­i­ties are de­vel­op­ing part­ner- ships with tax-credit de­vel­op­ers. They are very much so re­ceiv­ing a huge hit in their cap­i­tal fund bud­gets,” Jar­rett said.

Fair­way Con­struc­tion is build­ing the com­plex, and Jar­rett said the com­pany is hir­ing lo­cal contractors for projects when­ever pos­si­ble. The com­plex will also em­ploy as many lo­cal res­i­dents as pos­si­ble.

Cour­tesy of Af­ford­able Eq­uity Part­ners

Liv­ing well: An artist's ren­der­ing of the Har­ris­town Park Se­nior Liv­ing Com­plex.

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