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Proposal to transform parking lot into affordable family community wins 2023 Affordable Housing Development Competition

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  A proposal to transform an underutilized municipal parking lot into a family-centered complex with townhouses, affordable apartments, a greenspace courtyard, and ground-floor commercial space in Revere, Mass., received the first-place prize in the 23rd Annual Affordable Housing Development Competition. The competition drew seven entries from groups of graduate students interested in architecture, real estate, planning, finance and policy who teamed up with local affordable housing organizations. The winning proposal, Aucella Court Homes, was presented by a student team from Harvard University, Clark University and Boston Architectural College, in collaboration with The Neighborhood Developers, Davis Square Architects and a finance mentor from TCAM.

  The initiative aims to create a total of 53 homes with over a third having three bedrooms. Twenty-seven rental units would be available to households earning 60% of the area median income (AMI), and 14 would be for those earning 30% of the AMI. All 12 townhouses in the community would be affordable to homebuyers earning up to 80% of the AMI.

  “Aucella Court Homes furthers its dedication to families by partnering with a local childcare organization to include a childcare center on the ground floor, provide discounted bus passes for residents, and a designated space for a community garden within the courtyard,” according to the team’s proposal.

  The competition was sponsored by Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston (FHLBank Boston), Boston Society for Architecture, CohnReznick, Kuehn Charitable Foundation, ICON Architecture Inc., and Citizens’ Housing and Planning Association.

  “I would like to commend all the teams for submitting such impressive proposals to create affordable homes that serve families, seniors, and formerly homeless individuals seeking supportive housing. For the past 23 years of this competition, teams of graduate students and mentors have dedicated countless hours to deliver solutions that stabilize neighborhoods and provide a sense of community,” said FHLBank Boston First Vice President–Director of Housing and Community Investment Kenneth Willis. “Thanks to our sponsors for once again partnering with us to make this competition successful.”

  The competition was judged by Anne Berman of Rhode Island Housing, George Demoulias of Citizens Bank, David Eisen of Abacus Architects + Planners, Peter Freeman of Freeman Law Group LLC, Aeron Hodges of Stantec Architecture and Emily Jones of LISC Boston.

  The winning team and developer shared the $10,000 first-place prize. Awards were also presented for the following:

  • Second place: The Bridge, a proposal to create a mixed-use, supportive community within a five-minute walk from downtown Salem, Mass. The development includes three buildings, with one building serving as a shelter and day center for homeless individuals and another building featuring 39 new studio apartments for residents transitioning into supportive housing. A final building will include 48 one-bedroom affordable apartments for seniors earing between 30% and 60% of the AMI. The team included students from Harvard University and MIT who collaborated with Harborlight Homes, Davis Square Architects and a finance mentor from CEDAC.
  • Third place: Walnut Park Place, which proposes to develop 22 new one- to three-bedroom condominiums affordable to those earning between 80% and 100% of the AMI and seven market-rate units in the Egleston Square section of Roxbury, Mass. The development proposal was driven by students at Harvard University and Clark University in partnership with Urban Edge, ICON Architecture and a finance mentor from Eastern Bank.

  About FHLBank Boston: Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston is a cooperatively owned wholesale bank for housing finance in the six New England states. Its mission is to provide highly reliable wholesale funding and liquidity to its member financial institutions in New England. The Bank also develops and delivers competitively priced financial products, services and expertise that support housing finance, community development and economic growth, including programs targeted to low-income households.

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