Flat 9 at Whittier in Roxbury, MA, has won a 2020 Charles L. Edson Tax Credit Excellence Award in the HUD Preservation Category.

Flat 9 at Whittier is the first of three phases to completely redevelop the Whittier Street Apartments site in Roxbury, MA, which was originally built in the early 1950s to provide 200 public housing units. Developed by Preservation of Affordable Housing and Madison Park Development Corporation, Flat 9 at Whittier provides 92 mixed-income homes, with 66 homes affordable to households making at or below 60 percent of area median income. Both the 9 percent and 4 percent Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (Housing Credits) were utilized to make this property possible, with syndication provided by the National Affordable Housing Trust and equity provided by Citizens Bank.

Once the full redevelopment is complete, the Whittier site will provide a total of 350 homes and commercial space, for which the property was also awarded a $30 million U.S. Housing and Urban Development Choice Neighborhood Initiative grant. The revitalization will create a healthier environment and reconnect the vibrant mixed-income and mixed-use development to the neighborhood, while drawing on the community’s strengths to preserve its character. The plan includes creating safe streets, better access to quality educational, and job opportunities that promote family self-sufficiency, and was developed as the Whittier Choice Neighborhoods team held more than 150 community meetings, surveys, focus groups, workshops, and other forums, including with the former public housing residents.

Flat 9 at Whittier will have a community impact coordinator to manage on-site resident services and to connect residents with outside community services, supports and benefits, such as healthcare enrollment, emergency rental assistance, after school or summer programs, food distribution, and financial services. On-site services provided by a partner will include: lease education, emergency rental and utility assistance, benefits assessment and enrollment, food access services, financial coaching, household budgeting, youth summer lunch programs, healthy eating workshops, health insurance counseling, flu clinics, blood pressure clinics, mobile dental clinics, and other needs as they arise.

The property is located just around the corner from the Whittier Street Health Center, and near grocery stores, schools, public transportation, employment opportunities, parks, recreation centers, museums, and galleries. The property also includes a business center, community room, playground, outdoor recreation area, bicycle storage, and activity room with kitchen.

Congressional Recognition

Statement from U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)

“Congratulations to Flat 9 at Whittier for receiving the Charles L. Edson Tax Credit Excellence Award – this is terrific news for Roxbury,” said Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). “Safe, stable and affordable housing is a basic right for all Americans and the redevelopment of the Whittier site will support economic development and strengthen our neighborhoods.”

Statement from U.S. Senator Ed Markey (D-MA)

“Every person in Massachusetts deserves affordable housing. Our state faces a housing and eviction crisis that can only be solved by smart investments in the health and safety of our communities,” said Senator Ed Markey (D-MA). “I congratulate the Whittier Choice Neighborhoods team for the well-deserved recognition through this award. Their work to provide affordable housing and build a community in Roxbury is critical to ensuring that these neighborhoods are places where everyone can call home.”

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