Permanently Affordable Housing to be Built Along Major Transit Corridor

By Mile High | milehighcre.com | April 23, 2019


DENVER — A development partnership including the Urban Land Conservancy (ULC) Mile High Development (MHD) and Brinshore Development will bring 133 units of permanently affordable rental housing to Sheridan Station on the Regional Transportation District’s (RTD) W Line. Located at 5330 W. 11th Avenue in Denver, Sheridan Station Apartments will be part of ULC’s expanding Community Land Trust (CLT), ensuring the property will remain affordable for generations through a 99-year renewable ground lease.

“This will be Mile High Development’s sixth affordable housing development in the past eight years, five of which are in Denver,” said George Thorn, founder and CEO of Mile High Development. “At Mile High, we believe everyone deserves access to quality housing, and look forward to providing hundreds of Denver area residents with safe, quality housing along a major transit corridor.”

In an effort to combat the growing need of affordable units, the City and County of Denver recently doubled its Affordable Housing Fund to $30 million annually, which will produce a $105 million funding surge in upfront funding to help create, preserve or acquire land for more than 6,000 units over the next five years. Denver Economic Development & Opportunity (DEDO) awarded Sheridan Station Apartments $1,995,000 from the Affordable Housing Fund, a testament to the city’s dedication to providing residents with quality housing along transit corridors.

“Ensuring affordability for Denver families, and affordability that’s connected to our transit corridors, is critically important to providing equity and opportunity for our hard-working residents,” said Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock. “This is a prime example of Denver’s Affordable Housing Fund in action, and we’re proud to provide public financing to help make these affordable homes a reality.”

The development of Sheridan Station Apartments was also made financially feasible through use of a 99-year renewable ground lease, resulting in the apartment complex joining ULC’s growing CLT to ensure permanent affordability. Land values in Denver often prevent opportunities for affordable housing. ULC’s incorporation of a CLT allows developers to avoid the expense of buying the land, creating a viable option for affordable development.

“Sheridan Station Apartments is an excellent example of the many variables that must fall into place to make affordable development happen,” said Erin Clark, Urban Land Conservancy’s Vice President of Master Site Development. “Incorporating a ground lease has become a critical component not only for ensuring permanent affordability, but also making these developments work financially up front.”

To complete the development, Mile High partnered with Brinshore Development, one of the largest developers of affordable housing in the country. Based out of Chicago, Brinshore is known for their innovative design and construction techniques, and often gravitates towards partnerships that promote affordability and sustainable development. Since 1994, Brinshore has developed more than 7,000 units of affordable housing using Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC). Denver-based Johnson Nathan Strohe is the architect for the project.

“Sheridan Station Apartments will be Brinshore’s first foray into the Colorado market,” said David Brint, CEO and co-founder of Brinshore Development. “We are fortunate to be partnering on such a unique development in the community, and are looking forward to bringing new affordable housing options to Denver residents.”

In 2018, the development partners successfully signed an agreement with RTD to lease up to 120 parking spaces in the adjacent parking garage for use by Sheridan Station Apartments residents. This innovative cooperation resulted in savings of more than $2 million in construction costs, allowing for all 133 units to be affordable to households earning between 30-60 percent of Area Median Income (AMI).

“RTD is committed to collaborating in the creation of a vibrant transit support system that connects people and their homes with their work and their recreation. Transit oriented development like the Sheridan Station Apartments demonstrates what the public and the private sector can do to create a great region in a responsible manner,” said RTD Board Chair Doug Tisdale.

The development is currently under construction and expected to be complete in the fall of 2020. Management and leasing will be operated by Silva Markham Partners.

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