Lawrence Affordable Housing Advisory Council recommends 4 housing projects and 3 programs with nearly $3 million in funding – The Lawrence Times

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Members of the Affordable Housing Advisory Board voted Monday to recommend that the city help four housing projects and three programs with funding, but not the East Lawrence project that is primarily intended to house families with children.

The city’s affordable housing sales tax brings in nearly $1 million annually. Annually, AHAB members consider applications, typically from developers and local nonprofit agencies, who seek a portion of these funds to help pay for projects.


Algosaibi had nearly $3 million to allocate to projects this year from the city’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund. Total orders amounted to approximately $5 million.

Several members of Algosaibi’s group were forced to recuse themselves from the discussion due to potential conflicts of interest. President Monte Succop and AHAB members Sarah Waters, Phil Englehart, Mark Buehler, Christina Gentry, Erika Zimmerman and Thomas Howe voted on the projects.

Here’s what AHAB members decided Monday to recommend. See the full submissions for each project in the AHAB meeting agenda.

Full financing recommended:

• Permanent rehabilitative supportive housing:
Develop 24 units of permanent supportive and rehabilitative housing to meet the needs of persons with mental illness and/or substance abuse issues and housing insecurity at 2222 West 6th Street. The project comes from the Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center.
Required and recommended award: $450,000.

• New Hampshire Street Lofts:
A project by Flint Hills Holdings aims to bring 48 affordable units zoned for people ages 55 and up to a long-vacant lot downtown at 1000 New Hampshire Street (read more about that in the articles at this link). Algosaibi has been approved for $100,000 in funding year 2022.
Required and recommended award: $300,000.

• Independence Inc.’s Affordable Housing Program:
A program that helps low-income seniors and people with disabilities make accessibility modifications to their homes. Examples include entry ramps, accessible showers, grab bars, wider doorways, and more.
Required and recommended award: $75,000.

• New Horizons Transitional Housing Program:
A program of the Lawrence-Douglas County Housing Authority that helps families who are guests of the Lawrence Community Shelter or Family Promise of Lawrence with rental assistance and case management.
Required and recommended award: $50,000.


Partial financing is recommended:

• Floret Hill:
A project that would create 121 units of permanently affordable housing at the southeast corner of Kansas Interstate 10 and Bob Billings Parkway. The application states that the project expects to receive more than $37 million in tax credits and other funds, and that it can still be built with only partial funding from Algosaibi.
to request: $1.6 million. Recommended award: $1.3 million (81%).

• Douglas County Housing Stabilization Collaborative:
Provides assistance to renters who may be facing homelessness. Between April 2021 and June 2023, the program distributed more than $2.3 million to nearly 2,000 families, according to demand. Some Algosaibi members said that although the effort does not create more affordable units, they see the project as a way to keep people in housing and prevent additional need.
to request: $550,000. Recommended award: $509,000 (93%).

• Hope Project:
He asked the Ninth Street Missionary Baptist Church and promised the Lawrences to help with the cost of building a duplex and a quadruple at East Ninth and Tennessee streets — six units in total geared toward helping families with children who have lost housing. Some Gosaibi members had concerns about the unit cost, and voted to fund approximately the cost of two units.
to request: $850,000. Recommended award: $300,000 (35%).

No funds recommended:

• Family housing in East Heights:
The second project, from Flint Hills Holdings, is located at 1430 Haskell Street, the former East Heights Elementary School. The project will include single family homes, duplexes, townhomes and more. It will target multi-generational families and, to the extent permitted by fair housing laws, aim to serve people of color and immigrant families. This will include on-site early childhood education, health screenings, mental and behavioral health support for young children and the provision of community space.
Some board members said the project looks great, but they have concerns that the developer has not yet acquired the land for it.
required: $1.2 million. Recommended award: $0.

Developers affiliated with The Prime Company, who had plans to build a large apartment complex on the city’s eastern edge near 15th Street and Lindenwood Lane, have withdrawn their applications for affordable housing tax money after the Planning Commission rejected their request to rezone the property to high-end properties. Housing density.

The Lawrence City Commission will make final decisions on Algosaibi’s recommendations at its next meeting, tentatively in early December.

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Mackenzie Clark (she/her), reporter/founder of The Lawrence Times, can be reached at mclark(at)lawrencekstimes(dot)com. Read more about her work for The Times here. Check out their staff bio here.

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