Economic Development, Higher Education, and Real Estate

Downtown affordable housing project takes next step

July 18, 2018
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GVSU Belknap Lookout affordable housing project partial rendering
Courtesy GVSU

A new affordable housing development downtown is in the planning stages.

The housing will be built in the Belknap Lookout neighborhood of Grand Rapids, on the south side of Trowbridge Street NE, between Lafayette Avenue NE and Prospect Avenue NE.

The project will have a housing mix of 70-percent affordable housing units and 30-percent market-rate units.

The development will be on land owned by Grand Valley State University. The university will lease .85 acres to Three CPK, which is a joint venture by Grand Rapids-based Third Coast Development and Okemos-based PK Housing & Management, to develop the affordable housing project. 

The architect on the project is Grand Rapids-based Integrated Architecture.

CPK will submit an application for low-income housing tax credits in November, and if the application is successful, the project could be completed by fall 2019.

The university will not use tuition revenue or any of its funds for construction of the project, operating expenses or any future repairs or renovations.

"We have shared a goal of providing the best quality of life for those who live, work and attend classes in this busy area of the city,” said Patricia Waring, community relations director, GVSU. “There are many details to projects like this one, and I'm pleased we had bright minds and wonderful attitudes around the table. We're looking forward to the addition of this housing project in the neighborhood with our health campus."

The cost and further details on the project haven’t been determined yet, according to Brian Copeland, associate VP for business and finance, GVSU.

“This collaborative effort should serve as a model for development within the city,” Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss said. “This project is consistent with what the residents of the neighborhood want, and it’s consistent with the strategy outlined by the city commission, which calls for preserving affordable housing, encouraging mixed-income neighborhoods and supporting our vulnerable populations. Progress can truly be good for all involved.”

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