EGG HARBOR CITY, NJ – The New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (HMFA) today joined local and state officials and representatives of Conifer Moorestown Ecumenical Neighborhood Development, Inc. (MEND) to celebrate the grand opening of Rittenberg Manor, a 100-unit affordable senior housing development in Egg Harbor City, Atlantic County. Five units will be set aside for homeless individuals, 62 and over.
The HMFA, an affiliate of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA), provided Rittenberg Manor with more than $5 million in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Disaster Recovery funds through the Fund for Restoration of Multifamily Housing (FRM) program and $620,000 in permanent financing. The Agency also awarded the project competitive 9% federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC), which will generate $13 million in equity.
"Rittenberg Manor will invigorate the Egg Harbor City community by providing a vibrant housing development for seniors on fixed incomes and individuals with special needs, including those who were displaced by the Superstorm Sandy in Atlantic County," said DCA Commissioner Charles Richman, who also serves as Chairman of the HMFA. "Sandy recovery programs are helping to address the unmet housing needs of seniors and special needs populations who are often times more vulnerable to natural disasters due to damaged or disrupted support networks, accessibility issues or increased cost of living."
The project was jointly developed by Conifer and MEND, Inc. Conifer is a nationally ranked, full-service real estate company specializing in the development, construction, management and ownership of high-quality, affordable housing communities. Since its inception in 1975, Conifer has grown considerably and currently owns and manages over 14,000 multi-family units in more than 220 apartment communities. MEND is a faith-based, community housing development organization that has worked since 1969 to help meet a portion of the need for affordable housing in southern New Jersey.
Sandy-impacted individuals who registered for Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) assistance, rented an apartment or owned a primary residence that was no longer habitable due to Sandy damage were given priority during the first 90 days of leasing.
Located in the heart of downtown Egg Harbor City, Rittenberg Manor is close to restaurants, shopping, professional offices, banks, medical resources, a park, and cultural resources. There are 84 one-bedroom units and 16 two-bedroom units available to seniors, 62 years of age and older. Each unit provides Energy Star rated appliances and heating and cooling systems that meet the Energy Star Program requirements. Project amenities include laundry facilities, an exercise room, computer room, library, community room and 80 onsite parking spots. The development has convenient public transportation links and there is a New Jersey Transit bus stop one-half mile from the site. While the 90-day priority period for Sandy-impacted individuals has concluded, the project is still accepting applications.
Individuals who are interested in learning more about Rittenberg Manor and its rental units may call Conifer at (609) 798-0072 for further details. They can also email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.coniferllc.com.
"Rittenberg Manor has transformed what was an underutilized property into an attractive housing community that provides quality affordable housing opportunities for seniors," said HMFA Executive Director Anthony L. Marchetta. "This project represents HMFA’s mission of providing safe, decent, and affordable housing with ease of access to important resources, such as public transportation, retail and shops in Atlantic County."
HMFA estimates that Rittenberg Manor, which cost approximately $20.6 million to develop, generated approximately $32.6 million in one-time economic output and created approximately 200 direct and indirect/induced full-time jobs during construction and approximately $1.2 million in state and local taxes. Now completed, the project will continue to add value to the community by providing more than $3.6 million in ongoing economic output, and 20 direct and indirect/induced full-time jobs and more than $206,000 in state and local taxes annually. Other funding sources for the development of Rittenberg Manor include a construction loan from JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A.
These economic impact figures were estimated using multipliers derived from a 2013 study entitled "Economic and Fiscal Impacts of the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency’s Investment in Affordable Housing," conducted by HR&A Advisors, Inc., a real estate and economic development consulting firm.
For more information on HMFA programs, including the Fund for Restoration of Multifamily Housing, please call 1-800-NJHOUSE or (609) 278-7400, or visit www.njhousing.gov.
Also, Sandy-impacted residents can learn more about affordable housing projects funded with Sandy recovery dollars by visiting the New Jersey Housing Resource Center at www.njhrc.gov. The database is free and easy to use. On the homepage, individuals can click on "Priority Housing for Sandy-Impacted Residents."
The page that opens will display a list of available housing opportunities throughout the nine counties the federal government determined were most impacted by Superstorm Sandy. The list includes such information as where projects are located, total number of housing units, contact information for the leasing office, website/phone number for people to submit applications, and date applications are being accepted. New information is regularly being added as it becomes available.