Affordable Housing Shortage Requires Many Players

The Columbus-Franklin County Finance Authority has long been known for its important role in economic development infrastructure and construction financing. Last month we reported on our PACE program which now offers even more competitive pricing.  With a solid financing performance history of over $2.4 billion for all of our programs, we are expanding our thinking to explore how we may deliver even greater community impact.

According to a 2017 report produced by the The Affordable Housing Alliance of Central Ohio for every 100 extremely low-income households in the Columbus metropolitan statistical area, there are only 29 available and affordable housing units.

Our community’s shortfall of affordable housing cannot be addressed by one organization or program.  The projects are often complex requiring a blend of equity, public and private financing, tax credits or other creative cost-avoidance or savings programs.  The required solutions will be many and require time for implementation to chip away at the community need.  The Franklin County Magnet program is a great example of a new affordable housing program just recently announced.

We are excited to report that the Finance Authority is actively exploring how we might play a role to bring more affordable housing to our market.   To inform our efforts we have been talking with a variety of stakeholders.  Our thanks to all who participated, the discussions have been incredibly valuable.  In the coming months we look forward to sharing some examples of new collaborations.  In the interim if you have a project you would like to discuss, please reach out.

Project Spotlight – The Rise

The Rise was supported by the Finance Authority through lease financing.  The public-private partnership enabled the redevelopment of an underutilized 5-acre property on the Cleveland Avenue corridor in the transforming Milo Grogan neighborhood.  Completed in 2019, the 192-unit project features a resort-style pool, fitness center, clubhouse lounge, enclosed dog park, community art space, and views of the downtown skyline.

Avenue Partners and Elford Development are appreciative of the collaboration with the Columbus-Franklin County Finance Authority, the Affordable Housing Trust, the City of Columbus, and the Milo Grogan neighborhood.  Without these community partners, the neglected trailer parking lot could not have been transformed into this thriving project.  We are proud to be part of the Milo Grogan community, and proud to provide such an attractive housing option to a broader range of affordability levels than can be found in other new projects nearby,” Paul Pardi, Avenue Partners and Tom Caldwell, Elford Development.

Squire Patton Boggs served as Bond Counsel and DiPerna Advisors served as Financial Advisor for the transaction.