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MHP's $4.6M, 40-year loan commitment helps Sudbury add affordability

Posted on May 5, 2019

SUDBURY --- In celebrating the beginning of construction of the Coolidge at Sudbury  Phase 2, B’nai B’rith Housing Executive Director Susan Gittelman stepped to the podium and described what the residents of Phase 1 mean to the town.  “Many of the residents who live at the Coolidge work here, support local businesses and are active in local congregations,” she said.

The Phase 2 groundbreaking on Friday, May 3 left no doubt that B’nai B’rith is determined to repeat that success. Phase 2 will add 56 affordable one-bedroom apartments for adults age 55 and over, complementing the 64 that were built in Phase 1.

Phase 2 also comes with B’nai B’rith’s dedication to supporting seniors.  “With our service-enriched housing model, we are committed to providing residents with the support they need to live in the community,” said Gittelman.

Coolidge at Sudbury Phase 2 is being financed primarily with federal and state low-income housing tax credits awarded by the state Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). Bank of America is providing construction financing and will be the tax-credit investor. The state is providing additional financing through its Housing Stabilization Fund and Affordable Housing Trust Fund.

“We are an aging population and we need more places like this,” said Timothy McGourthy, the Baker Administration’s deputy secretary for housing and economic development. “We have a challenge to house all the people who want to live in Massachusetts and we have to find ways to house all of them.”

The Massachusetts Housing Partnership (MHP) has committed a $4.6 million loan with a 40-year term from its Treasury Risk Share Program. All of this private and public financing will enable Coolidge at Sudbury Phase 2 to offer all its units at affordable rents at or below 60 percent of area median income, which in Sudbury is $56,800 for a household of two.

This is MHP’s first loan to B’nai B’rith and its second loan in Sudbury. In 2012, MHP provided a $1 million loan and a low-interest $756,000 second mortgage to support the Sudbury Duplexes, a scattered site Ch. 40B effort by the Sudbury Housing Authority to raze and replace four aging single-family homes with five duplexes totaling 10 affordable apartments. This was funded by MHP’s Neighborhood Rental Initiative, a $5 million program that supports the creation of small-scale affordable housing for families in high-opportunity communities.  

“We are in an extraordinarily high-cost market and we’re not building enough housing,” said Clark Ziegler, MHP’s executive director. “On top of that, we have about a million baby boomers who will leave the work force in the next decade and we aren’t building enough housing for the new workers who will take our jobs. We need leadership and we need every town like Sudbury to step up and do a lot more together.”

Demographic data illustrates the need for affordable housing for seniors in Sudbury. According to MHP’s DataTown web site, more than 15 percent of the town’s population is over 65, compared to seven percent in 1990. According to B’nai B’rith, 25 percent of all Sudbury households have at least one household member who is over 60 years old and one-quarter of these adults make less than $50,000 per year.

Recognizing this need, the Town of Sudbury is supporting Phase 2 with $250,000 from its housing trust fund. Sudbury Town Meeting is voting in May whether to provide an additional $320,000 in Community Preservation Act Funds. Phase 2 is also receiving $178,000 in federal HOME Funds awarded by the MetroWest HOME Consortium.

“Few projects come along that are so successful and collaborative,” said Robert Haarde, chair of the Sudbury Board of Selectmen. “Coolidge is helping the town have a diversity of housing choices.”

For more information about this loan and MHP’s financing products, check out our rental financing web page or contact MHP Senior Loan Officer Alice Wong at awong@mhp.net.