Last fall, Admiral Church finalized a deal to turn over its half-acre site to Homestead Community Land Trust, which would in turn build housing and a space for the church and its community partners. More than three months after this open house provided more details on the plan, a city Office of Housing grant has been finalized to fund part of it: $1,430,000, as part of the city’s annual affordable-housing funding round. After the city’s announcement on Wednesday, we checked in with Homestead CLT to see where the project is at.
First a bit of backstory – Admiral Church had been working for years to figure out a sustainable future to deal with its deteriorating building, while using its half-acre campus for community good, preferably including affordable housing. The church started working with Homestead in 2022 and announced an agreement in fall 2023 that is expected to result in townhomes on the site, all for sale, some at market rate, more at “permanently affordable” prices facilitated by Homestead holding the actual land “in trust.” The latter is made possible by funding Homestead obtains from both public and private sources.
So we asked Homestead’s Kathleen Hosfeld what the newly finalized city grant means to the project: “The City funding is one of several sources we need. It represents a little over half of the public funding to make the project feasible. Unfortunately, the project did not receive an award from the State in the 2023 funding round just announced. This means we’ll need to apply again next fall.”
The city announcement included some specific projected numbers for the housing that the project would create – saying the project would “construct 18 new townhomes, where 11 will be permanently affordable 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom townhomes.” However, Hosfeld tells WSB that the numbers are not final yet: “We are still in the scenario exploration phase – working to create a cohesive campus with a church facility that meets their needs, housing that meets our mission goals, and an overall design that fits with the neighborhood. As a result, we have not finalized the number of affordable and market rate homes. The funding amount awarded by the city can be amended if we reduce the number of homes. We will know more as we continue to learn about site constraints.”
More information for the community is expected in spring, she added: “We are hoping to have some concepts to share with the community in either March or early April for feedback.” If you’ve missed previous coverage explaining how Homestead’s model works – here’s their explanation.