TRENTON, N.J. – New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (HMFA) Executive Director Anthony L. Marchetta joined federal, state, and city officials and community leaders to celebrate the grand opening of Rush Crossing, a 204-unit newly constructed apartment community built on the site of the former public housing complex in Trenton, Mercer County. The HMFA, an affiliate of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA), provided the project with $31.7 million in funding through its Multifamily Conduit Bond Program, and awarded the project the 4% federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) that generated approximately $21.6 million in private equity.
“We are excited to see the opening of the largest housing development in Trenton in over a decade, which will provide affordable housing opportunities for the city’s hard-working families,” said DCA Commissioner Richard E. Constable, III, who also serves as Chairman of the HMFA. “Thoughtfully designed mixed-income communities, such as Rush Crossing, enhance the surrounding neighborhood, bring new hope to families and foster community development in our cities.”
The project, with approximately $61.2 million in development costs, will not only provide affordable housing opportunities for New Jersey families, but will continue to have a positive economic impact on the Mercer County community. HMFA estimates that the project generated approximately $97 million in one-time economic output and created approximately 581 full-time jobs during construction. Now completed, the project will continue to add value to the community by providing more than $10.8 million in ongoing economic output and approximately 61 full-time jobs annually.
Other funding sources for the Rush Crossing development include Urban Transit Hub Tax Credits provided by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority and purchased by JPMorgan Chase, a permanent loan, also provided by JPMorgan Chase, Trenton Housing Authority HOPE VI and Capital Funds, City of Trenton HOME and Regional Contribution Agreement Funds, Federal Home Loan Bank Affordable Housing Program Funds through First Choice Bank, and a deferred Developer Fee.
Located on the former site of a blighted public housing complex, Rush Crossing consists of 204 apartments and townhomes in 13 three-story buildings. Residences feature open floor plans, large windows, fully-equipped kitchens, spacious closets, ceramic-tiled baths, washers and dryers, and resident-controlled heating and central air conditioning. Community amenities include a 5,400 square foot community building, audio/visual room, computer lab, playground, picnic area, and a community garden. Additionally, Pennrose Management offers a number of services on-site, including an after-school club, cooking classes, financial classes, and garden club.
In constructing Rush Crossing, the project developers enhanced the natural environment with secure green spaces. Infrastructure and other public improvements were designed to seamlessly connect Rush Crossing to the surrounding community. A recreational walkway along the adjacent Assunpink Creek was created and will become part of Trenton’s Assunpink Greenway project. All buildings are pursuing LEED for Homes certification.
“I am so pleased that the HMFA, New Jersey’s affordable and workforce housing bank, provided the critical financing that brought Rush Crossing to fruition,” said HMFA Executive Director Marchetta. “Under the HMFA’s Multifamily Conduit Bond Program, well-capitalized developers can benefit from the most competitive interest rates, Agency-provided tax-exempt financing, and Low Income Housing Tax Credits.”
One hundred percent of the project units are affordable, with 152 units available to households with incomes at or below 60% of the Area Median Income (AMI), 42 units at or below 50% AMI, 10 units at or below 35% AMI, with one unit reserved for the superintendent.
Annually, states are allocated Low Income Housing Tax Credits by the federal government on a per-capita basis. HMFA, as the administrator of the federal Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program in New Jersey, allocates approximately $20 million in 9% credits annually, which generates over $180 million in equity for the development of affordable housing in the state.
The project was developed by Pennrose Properties, a Philadelphia-based real estate developer and property manager, in partnership with the Trenton Housing Authority.
For more information on HMFA programs, please visit www.njhousing.gov.