GARWOOD, NJ – New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Richard E. Constable, III, and New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (HMFA) Executive Director Anthony L. Marchetta recently announced the groundbreaking of Westfield Senior Housing, a 72-unit affordable rental development in the Borough of Garwood, Union County, for seniors age 62 and older. The HMFA, an affiliate to DCA, has awarded the project federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits, which is estimated to generate more than $5.5 million in private equity, and will provide $11.1 million in construction financing.
"Westfield Senior Housing is an outstanding example of how the public and the private sectors can work together successfully to transform an underutilized site into a thriving, green, affordable housing community," said Commissioner Constable, who also serves as Chairman of the HMFA. "This multifamily development will provide affordable housing to seniors that will help them to reduce their carbon footprint and save money."
Westfield Senior Housing, which will be built on the site of an underutilized school and convent, will be a three-story, 72-unit new construction senior rental project. All units, which will available to very low-income seniors, will contain one-bedroom and are equipped with Energy Star appliances. Amenities include laundry and community facilities and are in close proximity to local shopping and public transportation. Each unit will have project-based rental assistance through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) which will allow residents to pay 30% of their income toward their rent, estimated to be approximately $300 per month.
In addition to the HMFA, other funding sources include HUD and the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York. The total development cost for the creation of Westfield Senior Housing is approximately $20.6 million, which will create approximately 195 short-term full-time jobs and 21 long-term full-time jobs.
"HMFA is extremely proud to support affordable senior housing developments like Westfield Senior Housing that allow senior citizens on low, fixed incomes to age comfortably in place among family and friends while maintaining a sense of independence," said HMFA Executive Director Marchetta. "The 83,000-square-foot housing complex will help address the enormous demand for affordable senior housing in central Union County."
Westfield Senior Citizens Housing Corporation, the project developer, is a 501c (3) nonprofit organization established in 1975 to acquire, construct, and operate affordable housing for low- and very low-income senior citizens. The mission of Westfield Senior Housing is to offer housing and other services, including recreation, transportation, social worker support, and special events to enrich the lives of its elderly residents.
HMFA is the administrator of federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits for New Jersey. These provide a dollar-for-dollar reduction in federal tax liability and act as a catalyst to attract private investment into the affordable housing market. New Jersey is annually allocated approximately $18 million in LIHTC and the sale of the credits produces over $162 million in project equity. Currently, there are more than 500 projects statewide in HMFA’s portfolio that contain over 32,000 units and assists with the rehabilitation or construction of approximately 20 projects annually.
For more information on HMFA programs, call 1-800-NJHOUSE or (609) 278-7400, or visit www.njhousing.gov