A Pair of Affordable Housing Projects

— including one on land in Orlando donated by Universal Parks & Resorts — were selected to get Orange County loans.

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The Orange County Commission on Feb. 7 approved a pair of projects and three alternates to receive part of $16 million in loans through a combination of the county’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund and the State Housing Initiatives Partnership (SHIP) program.

The county plans to make this type of funding available annually.

Why this matters: New affordable housing construction creates opportunities for contractors, vendors and suppliers, and lowers housing costs for many workers in the region.

The two projects selected as the primary projects include:

  • Apopka Leased Housing Associates I LLLP; Dominium Holdings I LLC and Dominium Holdings II LLC: Requested $7 million to build 312 affordable units on the western portion of 1277 and 1255 Plymouth Sorento Road in Apopka. Plymouth, Minnesota-based developer Dominium Inc.’s plans for the 34.71-acre site include The Mira, with up to 336 units of affordable apartments, and The Waters, a project with 180 affordable independent senior-living units, which total more than $150 million.
  • WHFT Affordable I Ltd. and Wendover Housing Partners LLC: Requested up to $7 million for the first phase of the Catchlight Crossings project slated to be built on land donated by Universal Parks & Resorts at the northeast of the intersection of Tradeshow Road and Destination Parkway. The first phase will include 148 units in a six-story building. At full buildout, the project will have more than 1,000 affordable housing units.

The three ranked alternatives in order of rank were:

  • The Enclave at Canopy Park LLC and Archway Partners LLC: Requested $7 million for 96 units within three buildings at the corner of 4th Street and Rio Grande Avenue in Orlando
  • Parkwood Plaza Apartments Ltd. and Lincoln Avenue Capital: Requested up to $7 million for a 300-unit project at 3255 W. Colonial Drive in Orlando, to be spread between eight buildings on land near an existing shopping plaza.
  • Osprey Sound Apartments LP and Ulysses Development Group LLC: Requested up to $7 million for a four-story, 100-unit building at 1401 Duskin Ave. in Orlando.

Orange County Commissioners did not comment on the projects during the meeting and the ranking passed unanimously. Orange County Housing and Community Development Manager Mitchell Glasser told Orlando Business Journal the next step will be for the county to negotiate a developer’s agreement for the two top projects, with the alternates in place in case the county can’t reach an agreement.

Glasser said the top projects scored well on a number of categories, including the percentage of units made available to low-income individuals as well as those with a percentage of “low-barrier” units, such as for those with low credit scores, eviction on the record or a minor criminal history.


Meanwhile, metro Orlando has among the least affordable and available rental housing per low income renter household in the U.S. The Washington D.C.-based National Low Income Housing Coalition found that metro Orlando was tied for the second-least with metro Riverside, California, with 18 units for extremely low income renters per 100 units.

The shortage is not limited to Orlando, as all 50 of the largest U.S. metros have a shortage of available rental housing for residents who are at or below the poverty line.

“Seven out of 10 renters with the lowest incomes — disproportionately people of color — are at severe risk of housing instability due to systemic inequities and federal underfunding of proven solutions,” National Low Income Housing Coalition President and CEO Diane Yentel said in a prepared statement. “Without robust federal action, the lowest-income renters continue to endure severe housing cost burdens, housing instability, eviction and, in worst cases, homelessness.”

News Source: Biz Journals

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