KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Last week, a group of organizers in Kansas City broke ground on a new housing development that will cater specifically to homeless families.
Nonprofit aiming to end homelessness in Kansas City, reStart and Affordable Housing of Kansas City, the brains behind the Rose Hill Townhomes, hope the project will serve a demographic that sometimes goes overlooked in the homeless community: families.
“There is a severe lack of housing options when it comes to shelters for families that have suffered from chronic homelessness,” Rep. Randy Dunn, D- Kansas City, said. “[Rose Hill] will help alleviate some of those issues.”
Dunn wrote a letter of support for the development to the Missouri Housing Development Commission in the hopes of earning tax credits for the housing project.
With a $6.7 million price tag, financing had to come from multiple sources, including Sugar Creek, Capital and Bank of America, among others. The developers also asked the MHDC for a $467,000 low-income housing tax credit in 2014. Those same tax cuts became an integral part of the development’s existence.
“It would be safe to say without those funds, this project would not be happening,” Dunn said. “They’re an integral part of this project.”
The project will provide 33 units of housing designed to look and feel more like high-quality housing in the Paseo West neighborhood near downtown Kansas City, and reStart will also provide some of its services for prospective residents, like financial literacy training and employment assistance.
Dunn also credited the Paseo West community in welcoming the development. He said while some other projects such as Rose Hill had been welcome in other communities, some had been more reticent in allowing low-income housing in their areas.
“But the Paseo West neighborhood greeted this project with open arms,” Dunn said.