A “city for everyone” is the moniker Mayor Mike Duggan often uses to promote his vision for Detroit, a city he promises will be inclusionary of all, including our most vulnerable low-income residents.
Today, Detroit is steps closer to achieving the mayor’s mission to meet pent-up demand for more affordable housing. A just-announced agreement with Bedrock guarantees an additional 700 residential units will be created or preserved for affordable housing. These units would likely have been converted to market rate, according to Bedrock.
The affordable units will be primarily located in the greater downtown area, where affordable housing options are needed to ensure downtown and midtown remain accessible for people of all incomes.
Over the next several years, Bedrock plans to develop up to 3,500 residential rental units in the City. This agreement, which will be submitted to the Detroit City Council today, provides that one out of every five, or 20 percent, of those units will be affordable housing for households whose income is 80 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI) or less.
The affordable units will be primarily located in the greater downtown area, where affordable housing options are needed to ensure downtown and Midtown remain accessible for people of all incomes.
The agreement reflects the City of Detroit’s and Bedrock’s commitment to the redevelopment of the greater downtown as an inclusive, mixed-income community that provides quality housing opportunities for all.
“It is important that a wide range of housing options, including affordable ones, are available in Detroit’s growing marketplace. Jobs and economic opportunity for Detroiters has been part of our mission since we started investing in Detroit seven years ago,” said Dan Mullen, President, Bedrock. “We are excited to further ramp up our commitment to invest in quality, affordable housing options to Detroiters representing a broad economic spectrum.”
“This represents the city’s largest developer proactively committing to invest in new affordable housing and preservation in the city’s strongest neighborhoods where it is critically needed,” said Arthur Jemison, Director of Housing and Revitalization for the City of Detroit.
Bedrock’s first two ground-up residential construction projects include affordable housing. At 28Grand in the Capitol Park district, Bedrock is nearing completion of a mixed-income development that will include 85 units dedicated to households making 60 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI) or less. Bedrock has also started construction on a 54-unit affordable development for seniors as part of the new City Modern mixed-income development. The new Brush Park neighborhood, located at 124 Alfred St., will be dedicated to seniors whose incomes are between 30 percent and 60 percent of the AMI.
“This important property sat dormant for nearly 60 years until Bedrock introduced its exciting vision for Brush Park. Through this project, we have come together as one city, community, and design team,” said Mona Ross-Gardner, Chair of the Brush Park Community Development Corporation. “The Bedrock project team listened to our vision and melded it into theirs to create a work of art, which pays homage to the past and looks toward the future. This unique blueprint accommodates all age groups, focuses on state-of-the-art safety protocols, and adds needed services for our growing community.”
The new Brush Park neighborhood, located at 124 Alfred St., will be dedicated to seniors whose incomes are between 30 percent and 60 percent of the AMI.
More than 2,000 units of existing affordable housing are threatened by expiring rental assistance contracts and will face strong pressure to convert to market rate developments. These units typically serve 60 percent AMI and below households and there are large clusters of them in downtown and midtown—many in senior buildings. As part of its overall commitment, Bedrock will not only be developing new affordable housing, but preserving existing developments as affordable housing for another 30 years. This will keep long-time residents in their homes and create an environment where future residents will still have access to affordable housing options in greater downtown.
“This agreement between the City and Bedrock is a big step toward creating and preserving mixed-income communities in downtown and midtown,” said Roger Myers, CEO of Presbyterian Villages of Michigan (PVM) and an active member of the Senior Housing Preservation of Detroit (SHP-D) coalition. “The combined commitments for both preservation and new development could provide long- term stability for individuals of all ages who will benefit from such important housing options.”
Since moving to Detroit in 2010, Quicken Loans, Bedrock and their family of companies have become the largest employer in the City. The Quicken Loans family of companies is proud to employ approximately 3,500 Detroit residents who live throughout the City, making it the largest single employer of Detroit residents as well. The organization has directly contributed nearly $130 million to various non-profit and civic initiatives to support Detroit’s neighborhoods, schools, and the City’s revitalization. This affordable housing agreement, along with other company initiatives like Rehabbed and Ready reflect the Family of Companies’ continuing commitment to increase opportunity for all.
Editor’s Note: To learn more about the development of affordable housing units see “The Map,” TheHUB’s exclusive guide to inclusionary neighborhood housing initiatives in Detroit.
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Lead photo by Michelle & Chris Gerard