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Two affordable housing developments in Grand Rapids and another each in Wyoming and rural Barry County secured a total of $4.4 million in crucial Low Income Housing Tax Credits this week. Two affordable housing developments in Grand Rapids and another each in Wyoming and rural Barry County secured a total of $4.4 million in crucial Low Income Housing Tax Credits this week. COURTESY RENDERING

4 West Michigan affordable housing projects receive $4.4M in tax credits

BY Thursday, June 16, 2022 05:30pm

Two affordable housing developments in Grand Rapids and another each in Wyoming and rural Barry County secured Low Income Housing Tax Credits in the latest round of awards for the key development funding mechanism. 

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) on Wednesday announced a total of $13 million in LIHTC funding for 12 projects statewide that will develop 529 affordable housing units. Of that total, MSHDA awarded the four West Michigan projects nearly $4.4 million in LIHTC funding to support 172 affordable housing units. 

Among the awardees, Illinois-based Woda Cooper Development Inc. will receive just over $1.3 million for the 55-unit Breton Grove project at 2400 43rd Street SE in Grand Rapids. The nearly $15.4 million project features 30 one-bedroom and 25 two-bedroom apartments. The firm’s plans also include 20 units dedicated to people with disabilities, people experiencing homelessness and veterans. 

“Without (LIHTC), we would not have been able to do this project, and we could have never built on this property,” said Craig Peterson, senior vice president of Woda Cooper Development. “Without everything coming together, we couldn’t provide for this great of a need.”

Patterson anticipates construction could start in March 2023 on the four-story apartment complex, with leasing to follow by June 2024. 

“It’s important to stress how important this housing is,” Patterson said. “The people that will live in this type of housing are people who service people in the community every day. They are tellers at the bank, young teachers, entrepreneurs getting started. These are people who desperately need shelter and safe, affordable and energy efficient housing.”

Additionally, Illinois-based Brinshore Development LLC and Grand Rapids-based Amplify GR will receive $1.5 million in LIHTC funding for a 45-unit development as part of the Boston Square Together project, a massive mixed-use project located across 12 adjacent properties in Grand Rapids’ Boston Square neighborhood. 

The project includes a total of 270 residential units, 80 percent of which will be rent-restricted. 

Last month, the Grand Rapids Planning Commission approved the community hub portion of the development, which will include an early learning center, health clinic, after-school programming, workforce development space, co-working space and a cafe and a multipurpose room that could be used for a banquet event or show.

Other awardees include: 

  • Union Suites Development LLC and Dwelling Place of Grand Rapids, which received $905,100 in LIHTC funding for a 52-unit, affordable senior housing project at 3566 Michael Ave. in Wyoming; and
  • Hart-based Dogwood Community Development, which received $688,000 in LIHTC funding for the 20-unit Village Flats project in the Barry County community of Nashville. 

Overall, the state projects the 12 housing projects that received LIHTC funding to add about $151 million to the state’s economy and create 1,000 jobs, according to a statement. 

The investments also fit within the Building Michigan Together plan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer released in April that has a goal of creating 75,000 new or rehabilitated housing units in the state in the next five years.

“We know that creating affordable housing benefits everyone in the state by stimulating local economic growth, but it also creates opportunities for Michiganders to have equitable access to safe, quality, affordable housing for their families, making for stable and secure living and upward mobility,” Chad Benson, MSHDA rental development director, said in a statement.

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