The Community Development Commission has approved $4 million in TIF for the renovation of the Barbara Jean Wright Apartments. Generally located at 1354 S. Morgan St, the 11.5-acre site is bound by W. Maxwell St to the north, W. 14th Pl to the south, S. Morgan St to the east, and another apartment complex to the west, bound by S Blue Island Ave.
Poised to be developed by Jonathan Rose Companies, the developer specializes in the acquisition and long-term preservation of existing affordable housing. With 272 existing affordable units on site, the entire complex will undergo a full rehabilitation, retaining all of the units.
Spread across 12 garden-style four-story apartment buildings and 15 two-story townhomes, the 272 units will be entirely renovated. Work includes new kitchen and baths, flooring, carpeting, windows, exterior building repairs, HVAC upgrades, and repairs to the basketball courts and landscaping. All apartments will be two-, three-, or four-bedroom configurations, with a mix of income levels, including a small portion of market-rate units.
Construction of a 4,000 square-foot clubhouse is also planned. The building will have offices for Jonathan Rose Companies as well as a community room for the residents. The clubhouse building will replace one of the multiple surface parking lots within the complex.
The $72.8 million renovation project will be funded through a variety of sources, including $45 million in bonds, $22.3 million in tax credit equity, and the now approved $4 million in TIF, among others. The developers will pay $17.6 million to acquire the complex, with construction costs estimated to total $40.7 million. Developer and other associated developer fees will round out the rest of the costs.
The project needs to go through environmental review and the site will be enrolled in a remediation program. Residents will be relocated within the full campus as renovations progress building by building, using the small percentage of vacancy to move residents around.