Atlanta BeltLine, Inc. (ABI) recently supported the creation of 160 units of affordable senior housing at 1265 Lakewood Avenue on the border of the Chosewood Park and South Atlanta neighborhoods through the BeltLine Affordable Housing Trust Fund (BAHTF). Invest Atlanta closed the $34 million dollar transaction on July 29, 2021, which included $1 million from the BAHTF and $16.5 million in Tax Exempt Bond financing. Prestwick Development Company will construct the brand-new units.
Additionally, 1265 Lakewood is also receiving $640,000 from Partners for HOME. The funds will support 16 units designated as permanent supportive housing for individuals experiencing chronic homelessness.
ABI has now partnered with organizations to create or preserve 2,542 affordable units within the BeltLine Tax Allocation District (TAD) out of a goal of 5,600 through 2030. A total of 4,347 affordable units have been created or preserved within walking distance of the Atlanta BeltLine. An ABI Affordable Housing Working Group Report set a goal of 320 units to be created or preserved in the year 2021. This year to date, 216 units have closed and 525 more are expected to close later this year, far exceeding the annual goal. A total of 616 affordable units are in the pipeline, including the 525 expected later this year.
40% of the affordable units created or preserved serve households at 60% AMI or lower.
ABI aims to advance land acquisition in geographies around the BeltLine in support of deeper and longer-term affordability as it relates to housing, job creation, small businesses growth, and connectivity. To date, ABI has invested approximately $39 million to purchase roughly 65 acres on five sites around the corridor.
Situated just a quarter-mile south of the Atlanta BeltLine, 1265 Lakewood Avenue is located on a segment of the Southside Trail – between Pittsburgh Yards and Boulevard – slated to bid for construction in 2022. The City and ABI applied for a FY21 USDOT RAISE grant in July 2021 for $22 million that would support construction of this segment. Funds from the recently created Special Service District will also cover construction costs. The remaining unpaved segments of the Southside Trail – from Boulevard to Glenwood Avenue – are expected to go into construction in early 2022. The drawings for the Southside Trail are at 90% complete. Work is in progress to align and confirm budgets in order to bring the drawings to 100% complete.
ABI, in partnership with Atlanta BeltLine Partnership (ABP), launched the Legacy Resident Retention Program (LRRP) to help alleviate displacement pressures caused by escalating property taxes for vulnerable homeowners. This program targets BeltLine Subareas 1, 2, 9, and 10, and provides financial assistance to cover property tax increases for qualifying homeowners through 2030. Homeowners in South Atlanta and a portion of the Chosewood Park neighborhood around the Lakewood site could be eligible for this program.
ABI is also partnering with the City of Atlanta, HouseATL, and ABP to identify long-term policy solutions to mitigate displacement pressures. ABI is in the process of developing a program that will provide supplemental rent subsidies to families earning 80% AMI to expand their housing horizons.
Finally, ABI works directly with our partners to ensure families have access to information related to housing incentives and assistance. In December 2020, The City of Atlanta published Affordable Housing ATL: A Resource Guide for Residents to ensure all Atlantans have information they need to access available housing resources. This includes information on programs related to home repair, rental assistance, and down payment assistance provided by our partners at Atlanta Housing, Invest Atlanta, and non-profit community development organizations.