The renovation of the NewCourtland building will add 175 apartments — not all occupied by seniors — to the 85 affordable units already on the site.
People of a certain age probably remember a time when the nuclear family was a bit more molecular. That is, a time when grandma or grandpa shared space under the same roof with their grandchildren – and, of course, their parents, their own children.
These arrangements had a lot to recommend, such as free childcare for working parents built into the living arrangements.
Since then, however, we have worked hard to sort out the generations, placing parents and children in suburban (or city) homes and sending grandparents to retirement homes. Some people – me, for example – believe that this kind of separation makes things worse for the elderly and for grandchildren, not to mention poorer parents.
Today, one of Philadelphia’s leading developers of affordable senior housing is taking a big step down memory lane. NewCourtland Apartments at Henry Avenue – slated to begin construction this summer – is a 175-unit mixed-income, multi-generational building that will offer both affordable apartments for seniors and market-priced apartments for everyone else.
In a press release earlier this year, NewCourtland President and CEO Joe Duffey explained: “135 of the apartments will be sized and priced to appeal to a wide range of income levels. 40 units will be reserved for seniors and subsidized for those who qualify financially. And 20 of the apartments will be equipped with disabled-accessible features; Inglis Housing Corporation, which specializes in providing accessible and affordable housing, designs these units.
Community amenities include a rooftop lounge, community garden, dog park, storage facilities, exercise room, ball fields, two guest apartments, community and event spaces, and a space creation that individuals, groups and organizations can rent for projects and hobbies. .
One of the main reasons NewCourtland is redeveloping this former psychiatric hospital into a mixed-income, intergenerational development: that way the company can get affordable seniors’ housing built faster. “We have already developed 85 affordable seniors’ housing units on this site as well as a life center and dialysis center for DaVita,” says John Unger, NewCourtland’s legal counsel and planning director. “What remains is a very tall 11-story tower.
“Generally, the way you would develop affordable housing is to apply for low-income housing tax credits. And it’s just a time-consuming process – there’s no way to do it all at once.
But NewCourtland also saw a unique opportunity in taking the path it took. “We thought, ‘That’s a lot of old people in one building,’” Unger explains. “Is it really the best thing for residents to just put this homogeneous population of seniors in one place? We thought if we combined affordable seniors housing, which we know and do so well, with market-priced housing and created an environment where people from all walks of life can come together and live, we think that will be the most dynamic and prosperous environment. for everyone.”
And that includes non-seniors with disabilities: 10 of the 20 accessible units will be offered at market rates.
The integration of income and generations will also be deepened. “We haven’t created a separate wing for affordable seniors or accessible units,” Unger says. “We very intentionally scattered them throughout the building to create a sense of community.” However, the company located the accessible units near the building’s elevators.
The common areas and the maker space are also designed to promote intergenerational diversity. Including the fitness center, where Inglis is working with NewCourtland to allow residents with disabilities to work out there as well. “We really want to create spaces where everyone is going to come together and find common ground,” says Unger.
NewCourtland at Henry Avenue is the first affordable senior housing project the company has built in this way. “All of our previous projects were strictly affordable seniors rental housing and developing living hubs,” says Unger.
Developing it as a mixed income project should also make it more affordable for NewCourtland. “We believe that including some units at market price helps subsidize affordable housing operations,” says Unger.
“Our hope is that if it goes well, it’s something we will definitely consider in future development. We will always strive to provide affordable housing for older people, but if we can do it in a way that is more financially viable for building operations and also creates what we believe is a better environment for seniors, we’re going to keep doing that.
NewCourtland Henry Avenue in numbers
Address: 3200 Henry Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19129
Number of units: 175 studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments ranging in size from 310 to 1,700 square feet. Twenty-one studios range in size from 310 to 380 square feet; 105 T1, from 460 to 700 square feet; 33 bedrooms with dens, from 690 to 934 square feet; 11 two-bedroom units, one or two levels, from 1,000 to 1,700 square feet; three three-bedroom, 1,700 square foot bi-level units and two 260 square foot guest apartments.
Number of parking spaces: Not available
Pet Policy: Not available
Rents: The 40 affordable seniors’ units are all one-bedroom apartments that rent for $1,225.50 per month. Market rate rents (all rounded up to the nearest dollar): Studios, $1,166 to $1,337 per month; one bedroom, $1,800 per month; a room with dens, $2,408 per month; two bedrooms, $1,907 to $3,588 per month; three bedrooms, $3,009 per month.
More information: The rental has not yet started for this building, but when it does, information will be available on the New Courtland websiteby email at [email protected] or by calling 1-888-530-4913.