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Low Income Housing Institute and New Hope Community Development Institute team to purchase S Jackson apartment building

(Image: Low Income Housing Institute)

The New Hope Community Development Institute’s work to preserve affordable housing and prevent displacement in the Central District will include the acquisition of a S Jackson development in a $15.3 million deal.

The Low Income Housing Institute and New Hope Community Development Institute announced the acquisition of Squire Park Plaza late last month from Jonathan Rose Companies.

“The purchase of Squire Park Plaza will ensure that it’s 60 apartments are preserved for long-term affordability. Currently many of the existing households are struggling to pay their rent during the pandemic,” LIHI executive director Sharon Lee said in the announcement.

According to the announcement, more than 75% of the residents at Squire Park Plaza are people of color.

“We are delighted to partner with the Low Income Housing Institute to purchase Squire Park Plaza as affordable housing,” New Hope’s Rev. Robert Jeffrey said. “The goal of New Hope Community Development Institute is to prevent the displacement of people of color from Seattle’s Central Area and to acquire properties to preserve long-term.”

Lee said Community Housing Capital and the Lucky Seven Foundation provided acquisition bridge loans to help the groups quickly purchase the building before the end of the year.

According to the announcement, LIHI was selected as the buyer in October after the property was put on the open market. LIHI and NHCDI say they are working with the City of Seattle, the State Housing Trust Fund and financial institutions to secure permanent financing to make 100% of the units affordable to families at 30%, 50% and 80% of the area median income.

The New Hope Community Development Institute is also working to develop new housing near 21st and Fir’s New Hope Missionary Baptist Church.

Councilmember Kshama Sawant has been an advocate for the group, saying “addressing past injustices means funding affordable housing today by using the Amazon Tax our movement won last year, and also increasing the Amazon Tax.

“It means giving preference to Central Area residents who have been displaced or are under threat of displacement from skyrocketing rents at the hands of corporate landlords and developers, such as Black working and low-income people,” Sawant said.

In December, New Hope was part of $95 million in city support for new affordable housing in with $13 million for the 87-unit project planned for the church’s Central District property.

Squire Park Plaza is located at 1700 S. Jackson and LIHI says it was originally developed in 2008 by the Central Area Development Association using public resources, including “City of Seattle-owned land, New Market Tax Credits, and the city’s Central Area Housing Fund.” There are 13 studio, 30 one-bedroom, and 17 two-bedroom apartments with rents ranging from $875 to $2,300. The building includes eight street level commercial spaces for small and minority-owned businesses including Cheeky Cafe and Frank’s Barber Shop and Salon. The property also includes a 62-car parking garage.

In 2014, tenants launched a petition in an unsuccessful attempt to stop the sale of the building to Jonathan Rose Companies for $11.25 million.

Squire Park Plaza is the seventh property purchased by LIHI in 2021 and it currently owns and manages 3,000 affordable apartments and operates 16 tiny house villages.


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4 months ago

You mean the taxpayers bought it!!