Twenty-five low-income seniors now have a new place to call home in Northeast.
District of Columbia Housing Authority Executive Director Adrianne Todman joined Mayor Muriel Bowser, the Menkiti Group, Dantes Partners, and other community partners to cut the ribbon on the Girard Street Senior Apartments on June 16. The 25 one-bedroom apartments at 1545 Girard Street, N.E., are designed for people 55 years of age and older and will be the home of 10 formerly chronically homeless individuals.
“How significant is this to have a beautiful building like this in a beautiful neighborhood like this?” said Bowser, who added the District is on track to preserve or build 7,500 affordable units. “We must make sure we have solutions for our most vulnerable residents,” such as seniors with fixed-incomes, she said.
Todman agreed and said, “These new homes will ensure that seniors with modest incomes will continue to live in the District of Columbia. DCHA is excited to be a part of this project and honored to help our seniors who deserve to live in dignity."
She continued, “The city is working for you.”
Ward 5 Council member Kenyan McDuffie agreed and said supporting more projects like Girard Street Senior Apartments is necessary to support the people who have lived in and “put so much work in over the years” in the District.
The project was financed using a combination of 9 percent Low Income Housing Tax Credits, gap financing from the D.C. Department of Housing and Community Development, and private financing from Amalgamated Bank. The development features 10 Permanent Supportive Housing units and also incorporates Local Rent Supplement Program funds for all of the units. Out-of-pocket rent for residents will be capped at 30 percent of their income.
“The housing authority frankly made this project possible by making the rents be 30 percent of AMI (area median income),” said Buwa Binitie, managing principal of Dantes Partners. “The housing authority gave us one shot to make this affordable for seniors.”
DCHD Director Polly Donaldson said the building, which took 11 months to construct, was the product of a consolidated proposal process with the city, which allowed the developers to write one proposal for development financing, operating subsidy, and services funding.
Bo Menkiti, CEO and Founder of the Menkiti Group, stated, "The Menkiti Group is proud to deliver another transformative development project to the Washington, D.C., community. We are particularly pleased that the Girard Street Senior Apartments will allow seniors to age in place with supportive services to enhance the quality of their experience. We view projects such as this as directly connected to the Menkiti Group’s mission of transforming lives, careers and communities through real estate.”