Rebuild Illinois awards $12 million for affordable housing preservation

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Chicago Construction News staff writer

Rebuild Illinois has announced almost $12 million for critical improvements to 27 affordable housing developments throughout Illinois.

More than 1,400 units of affordable rental housing will see vital capital repairs that will address code violations, resolve security issues and improve the health and safety of both the buildings and their residents.

“In Illinois, affordable housing is a right—not a privilege,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “For too long, our low-income families have resided in homes falling into disrepair—lacking critical security and infrastructure improvements. This funding will ensure that every Illinoisan has access to the quality, safe housing they have long deserved.”

Created in January, the program provides grants of up to $475,000 to affordable housing developments for property stabilization, rehabilitation and/or improvements. All property owners are required to extend their current use and income restrictions for an additional 10 years beyond their current expiration date to ensure rehabilitated units remain affordable.

“With the nation already facing an affordable housing shortfall, it is critical to not only create additional housing, but ensure our current stock does not fall into disrepair forcing households to relocate,” said IHDA Executive Director Kristin Faust. “I thank the Governor and Illinois General Assembly for their continued support in ensuring people are not forced from their homes through no fault of their own.”

To be eligible, developments must have a minimum of 25% of the units restricted to households with incomes at or below 60% of the Area Median Income. In addition, eligible developments were required to be impacted by at least two of the conditions identified below:

  • Direct financial risk to IHDA or another funding entity;
  • Existing physical needs that, if not repaired threaten the sustainability of the development;
  • Loss of marketability;
  • Loss of affordability due to expiration of use restrictions or loan maturity; or
  • Inability to sustain operations with income and rent restrictions going forward.

All applicants were required to submit a Physical Needs Assessment completed by an independent third party that addressed all anticipated capital repairs required within the next 12 years.

“I am happy to announce these awards from the Rebuild Illinois Program, as some of our city’s housing infrastructures are in deep need of rejuvenation,” said Majority Caucus Chair Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago). “At a time when the nation is seeing unprecedented housing insecurity, I am proud that elected officials and stakeholders could come together to give Illinois communities the revitalization and the accessibility needed to combat the housing crisis.”

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