Stimulus funding at work at Seattle Housing Authority
Seattle Housing Authority has been awarded a total of more than $45 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), which was signed into law on February 17, 2009.
Seattle Housing received $17 million in ARRA funding in February 2009 as part of its proportional share of the $3 billion in stimulus funding made available to housing authorities across the U.S.
The remaining $28 million in ARRA funding received by the agency was secured through a competitive process.
All of the ARRA funds received were made available for Public Housing capital projects. The progress being made on projects funded by those dollars is documented below.
Seattle Housing is using $3.1 million of the $17 million proportional dollars awarded in February 2009 to fund the construction of Tamarack Place, an 86-unit low-income apartment building located in Rainier Vista next to the Rainier Vista Boys & Girls Club.
An additional $10.3 of the $17 million will be used for infrastructure at Rainier Vista north, which will help build sewers, electrical systems, streets and sidewalks to prepare for the construction of additional low-income housing in the community.
The first floor of Tamarack Place features commercial space for lease and commercial leases are currently being signed by restaurants, an acupuncturist and other small businesses.
Funding awarded through the competitive process allows the agency to use $10 million in ARRA funds to complete construction of that additional low-income housing. These funds will be matched by almost $22 million from other sources and will enable Seattle Housing to build 118 new, energy-efficient, low-income rental housing units in the third phase of construction at Rainier Vista.
Construction of this final group of rental units will complete the rental housing on the 65-acre site. The new units will be affordable to low-income people along a range of incomes.
Tamarack Place progress to date:
- 100% completed and leased up. A Grand Opening celebration was held January 20, 2011.
Rainier Vista North infrastructure Phase II progress to date:
- Construction is over 98% complete
- Wetland mitigation work is next on the schedule as weather permits
Rainier Vista Northeast Rental Housing Phase III progress to date:
- Foundations are in on four blocks and in progress on three remaining blocks
- Framing continues on five blocks
- Interior finish work is ongoing for Block 53, which is on schedule for August 1st occupancy
- Construction is 42% complete
Expected completion: Tamarack Place construction was completed November 2010. Rainier Vista North infrastructure construction is almost complete. The final group of rental units at Rainier Vista is expected to be complete by February 2012.
Lake City Court
Lake City Court has added 86 apartments for families in a mixed-income building in northeast Seattle. The building celebrated its grand opening on September 20, 2011. Built on a site where 16 distressed public housing townhomes were demolished in 2002 due to persistent flooding, Lake City Court now provides housing on this 1.8 site that is rich with urban conveniences and services.
All of the large family units on the ground floor at Lake City Court have direct access to the outdoors, making this a better enviornment for children. Bike storage and a playground are among the amenities.
The new apartment building is one element of a HOPE VI redevelopment. The $8 million in ARRA funds, leveraged with over $12 million from other sources, has enabled the Housing Authority to dramatically increase the use of green features.
Progress to date: Building completed. Groundbreaking event held in June 2010.
Grand opening held on September 20, 2011.
Denny Terrace is a 221-unit, 40-year-old concrete and brick public-housing high-rise located in central Seattle. Its residents are primarily people with disabilities and the elderly.
A $10 million ARRA grant helped fund rehabilitation of Denny Terrace to increase energy conservation to the highest possible level and replace and update major building systems that had reached the end of their useful life.
New windows, several inches of rigid foam insulation and a weatherproof, colored stucco façade were installed to improve the livability and aesthetics of Denny Terrace. These changes, along with new lighting, ventilation, appliances and plumbing upgrades, will contribute to the anticipated 35% reduction in energy and water usage at the building.
The renovations – similar to those completed in the homeWorks project – are expected to extend the useful life of the building for decades.
Completed: October 2011
A rehabilitation project at Bell Tower used $3.5 million of stimulus funding, which provided new windows for the building, waterproof the exterior and correct water line problems. For several years, residents of Bell Tower have had inadequate hot water.
Located in the heart of Downtown Seattle in the bustling Belltown neighborhood, Bell Tower sits along First Avenue, overlooking the waterfront and Elliott Bay. In this photo, progress is being made on painting the building's façade.
The rehabilitation project for Bell Tower created 15 apartments that meet federal standards for accessibility.
Job creation and retention
As of December 31, 2010, 696 jobs were either retained or created on ARRA-funded projects.