Community leaders, housing and health advocates, and development partners today celebrated the start of construction for The Elisabetta, a new 91-unit affordable-housing development in the historically diverse Globeville neighborhood of Denver.
Developed by Gorman & Company, The Elisabetta will be located on the campus of Laradon, a Denver nonprofit that provides education, training and support for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
The new community will feature one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments for residents earning 30, 50 and 60 percent of Area Median Income. Monthly rents will range between $506-$1,012 for one-bedroom, $607-$1,215 for two-bedroom, and $701-$1,402 for three-bedroom apartments. Nearly a quarter of the apartments will be set aside for residents living with a disability, and all the apartments are designed to be adaptable and accessible for tenants and visitors with varying disabilities.
“Today marks an important step in creating long-term affordable-housing options in the Globeville neighborhood of Denver,” said Kimball Crangle, Colorado Market President, Gorman & Company. “The Elisabetta will provide residents an important link to housing and supportive services, particularly those who are living with a disability.”
Laradon, which serves more than 650 children and adults with developmental disabilities each year and is the largest and most diverse service provider of its kind in Colorado, will occupy 12,500 square feet of space on the first floor to provide on-site programming and support to adults with disabilities.
“Today’s groundbreaking is another example of Laradon’s ongoing commitment to our community by helping spur long-term investments in our campus and partnerships,” said Laradon CEO Doug McNeill. “The Elisabetta will provide much needed affordable housing in Globeville and additional opportunities for individuals with disabilities to be involved in the community and live life without limits.”
During the groundbreaking event, UnitedHealthcare – the largest investor in the new development – announced it is investing $14.7 million in equity with Optum Bank through the use of Low-Income Housing Tax Credits. UnitedHealthcare partnered with Enterprise, a national organization that improves communities and people’s lives by making well-designed homes affordable, to invest in The Elisabetta.
“UnitedHealthcare’s investment in The Elisabetta is part of a company initiative to help people live healthier lives by connecting affordable, quality housing to better health,” said Jeri Jones, West Region CEO, UnitedHealthcare Community & State. “This model community will expand housing opportunities and offer residents on-site supportive services to help them thrive and succeed.”
UnitedHealthcare, which employs 2,600 people in Colorado and serves the health care needs of nearly 1.5 million people statewide, is making the investment as part of a company initiative to help people live healthier lives by connecting affordable, quality housing to better health. Since 2011, the company has invested $384 million to build more than 70 affordable-housing communities in 14 states, helping create nearly 3,400 affordable homes for individuals and families.
“By pairing homes for people with disabilities with supportive services that help them live independently, home becomes more than just shelter. They’re a springboard that helps people reach their full potential,” said Charlie Werhane, President and CEO of Enterprise Community Investment. “Enterprise is proud to partner with UnitedHealthcare and Gorman & Company on this new development.”
The Colorado Housing and Finance Authority (CHFA) awarded federal and state Low Income Housing Tax Credits to support the development. The State of Colorado is providing $800,000 in financing through the Colorado Housing Trust Fund as well as Project Rental Assistance with 22 Section 811 vouchers. Additional major funding for the development includes $1.8 million in financing from the City of Denver; and $500,000 from Laradon as part of its commercial lease agreement. Citibank is providing $14.5 million in construction proceeds and an $8.2 million permanent loan.
“Today marks an important milestone in helping create new models for quality, affordable housing in Colorado,” said Cris White, CHFA Executive Director and CEO. “When completed next year, The Elisabetta will offer new opportunities and hope for the individuals and families who will call this new community their home.”
“This groundbreaking represents the amazing results that can happen when our community comes together,” said City of Denver District 9 Councilmember Albus Brooks. “The Elisabetta helps lay the groundwork for great opportunities for our neighborhood, particularly with new, affordable houses with on-site support where individuals and families can live together for generations to come.”
Shopworks Architecture is the architect for The Elisabetta, and the construction contractor is Deneuve Construction. The development is expected to open in late 2019. Ross Management Group will manage the property. The Elisabetta will include fully equipped kitchens, ample storage space, central laundry facilities and a community room with fitness equipment and gathering spaces. An in-house bicycle-share program will be created at the property to encourage multi-modal transit options.