Flipping Gentrification: Nonprofit Developer Breaks Ground for 1st Affordable Condos in a Decade — Somerville Community Corporation

Nonprofit developer Somerville Community Corporation breaks ground for the construction of the first purpose-built affordable condominiums in the hot Somerville, Mass., housing market in over a decade.



SOMERVILLE, Mass.Sept. 11, 2017PRLogDaniel LeBlanc, Somerville Community Corporation CEO, and  Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone were joined today by Lionel Romain of the Community Economic Development Assistance Corporation and Dan May, vice president, East Boston Savings Bank at a Groundbreaking Ceremony for new construction of affordable condominiums at 163 Glen Street, East Somerville, Mass.

The project by nonprofit developer Somerville Community Corporation and co-developer Doug George is an adaptive reuse of an old American Legion Post in East Somerville and is the first purpose-built affordable homeownership condominium construction in Somerville in more than a decade.

A unique feature of the project is that, other than the traditional construction loan from East Boston Savings Bank, it is being financed exclusively by the City of Somerville with funds made available through the Community Preservation Act (CPA).

“Since the crash a decade ago, it’s been nearly impossible to build new condo developments where the majority of those condos are affordable,” states Danny LeBlanc, CEO of Somerville Community Corporation. “It’s a testimony to the commitment of the Mayor and his team at the City that we are able to break ground at 163 Glen Street, with eight of the eleven new condos dedicated as affordable, and with funds committed by the City itself.”

In addition to CPA monies, the City is providing funding through the Somerville Affordable Housing Trust Fund, the Somerville HOME allocation and the Community Challenge Grant. Both HOME and the Community Challenge Grant funds are provided to the City of Somerville through the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD).

SCC acquired the property to create 11 condominiums and provide homeownership opportunities for Somerville residents of moderate income. Eight of the units will be designated as affordable, which will allow people at 80%, 100% and 110% Area Median Income (AMI) to purchase housing in Somerville’s very hot housing market. Three units will be market rate, which helps raise additional revenue to support the construction.

With our members, SCC wfv works to sustain affordability and livability for the residents of Somerville, Mass. We focus on amplifying the power of low and moderate-income people, recent immigrants and generational descendants of earlier immigrants through organizing, housing development and economic stability programs.

List of Funding Sources

Somerville Community Preservation Act

Somerville Affordable Housing Trust Fund

Somerville Community Challenge Grant, awarded by U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development – HUD

Somerville HOME Investment Partnership, awarded by U.S Department of Housing & Urban Development – HUD

East Boston Savings Bank

Community Economic Development Assistance Corporation (CEDAC)

For more on the Glen Street project: http://somervillecdc.org/news/new-affordable-homeownershi…

About the Community Preservation Act: The Community Preservation Act (CPA) is a Massachusetts state law that enables municipalities to create a steady funding source for affordable housing, historic preservation, open space and recreation land projects. Somerville adopted the CPA in 2012. SCC convened a broad base of partners, including Mayor Curtatone, through the Committee for a Stronger Somerville to oversee the campaign for a CPA. The campaign was successful, with the support of over three-quarters of Somerville voters. To date, $12 million has been awarded in CPA funds to 42 projects across the City.


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