Silver Key plans affordable housing project for low-income seniors in Colorado Springs
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) – The agency known to help provide home health care, meals and transportation to seniors is now entering the real estate business.
Silver Key intends to build a 50-60 unit apartment complex next to its offices on Murray Boulevard on the southeast side of town.
The project was reduced from its initial size of 70 units due to the increased costs of construction materials; the cost of the project is not specified but will be lower than the initial amount of $ 12 million.
To help pay for the construction, Silver Key will apply for tax credits from the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority and received a loan from the Pikes Peak Real Estate Foundation to help with their claim.
Construction could start next spring; about two-thirds of the units are for residents earning less than $ 20,000 per year, with the remainder going to tenants earning a little more.
The complex will be located on a three-acre lot that Silver Key purchased for $ 2 million in 2015. The property is currently covered in weeds and is home to several homeless camps.
Officials said the project will help address a dire need for such housing; many older people live with friends and relatives, or in their vehicles, or move to cheaper rural areas because they cannot afford rising rents or security deposits.
“It often makes the difference between paying rent or spending money on utilities, food or medicine,” said Derek Wilson, Silver Key’s chief strategy officer. “And many seniors have reduced or limited incomes. They cannot afford the rising housing costs that we are seeing.”
Wilson said the agency did not expect to see such strong demand for affordable housing and rent assistance.
“Those with unmet housing needs report worse or worse physical, mental or oral health,” he said. It creates all kinds of cascading problems. And especially for the elderly, there is a whole series of problems. Because as you get older, there is a cognitive decline.
Project Silver Key is one of only two recent projects that specifically address the housing needs of low-income seniors. The Atrium in Austin Bluffs, a 54-unit complex on city donated land, is expected to welcome tenants later this year.
The Silver Key project is not his first venture in housing; since the 1980s, the agency has managed the senior heritage plaza, owned by the city, a 35-unit complex.
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