CHA Board approves funding to support development of Southbridge – formerly Harold Ickes Homes

CHA Board approves funding to support development of Southbridge – formerly Harold Ickes Homes

Signals next step for new mixed-income, mixed-use community that will include 877 units, amenities and retail

CHICAGO (Sept. 19, 2018) – (RealEstateRama) — The CHA Board of Commissioners Tuesday approved up to $24.8 million in funding for the first two development phases at Southbridge, a contemporary mixed-use, mixed-income community on the footprint of the former Harold Ickes Homes.

The first of three phases, Southbridge Phase 1 is expected to break ground in early 2019 and be completed in 2021. It will include 68 units for CHA families, 26 affordable, and 112 market-rate rental units.

All three phases will include a total of 877 new residential units, including 244 units for CHA residents and up to 60,000 square-feet of planned commercial/retail space.

“It is a new era for those who formerly lived in the Harold Ickes Homes,” said CHA CEO Eugene E. Jones, Jr. “But it also represents the expansion of Chicago’s vibrant South Loop. Southbridge will be at the center of the historic Bronzeville, dynamic Chinatown and bustling McCormick Place Square neighborhoods. And it will be steps away from CTA’s green and red line stations and multiple bus routes. We couldn’t be more excited.”

A joint venture consisting of The Community Builders and McCaffrey Interests was selected as the development team and approved by the CHA Board in June 2015. The $24.8 million for Phases 1A and 1B will provide funds for project redevelopment activities, including site remediation.

“The Community Builders is proud to partner with CHA and McCaffrey Interests to create Southbridge,” said Terri Hamilton Brown, Midwest Regional Vice President for The Community Builders. “This new planned community will bridge the Chinatown, Bronzeville and South Loop neighborhoods and provide modern residences and vibrant retail shops. Southbridge represents The Community Builders’ continued commitment to building and sustaining strong Chicago communities.”

Ald. Pat Dowell (3rd Ward) said: “After many years, I am delighted the CHA Board approved Southbridge. The redevelopment of this site is a pivotal part of connecting the entire Near South Side. I look forward to continue working with CHA and the development team for the full redevelopment of this site.”

The development and construction team will hire residents throughout the construction process through CHA’s Section 3 program which provides opportunities and support for resident-owned businesses.

On-site amenities will include elevators, balconies, decks, club room, fitness room, bike storage, dog spa, parking and retail stores, as well as on-site property management and resident services. The retail stores will be located in mid-rise buildings along State Street.

The development will also include the rebuilding of Dearborn Street, 23rd Place and 24th Street, and the installation of new infrastructure, including water, sewer and electric for the site.

The Harold Ickes Homes was originally situated on approximately 18 acres within the Near South Side community area and located between 22nd, State, 25th and Dearborn.

Also at Tuesday’s Board meeting, Jones reported that CHA has received strong bond ratings and stable outlooks from the two major bond rating agencies, including Fitch Ratings which, for the first time in its history, has rated a U.S. public housing authority and handed down a AA- with a stable outlook. CHA also received the same rating from Standard & Poor’s.

“I am proud that our fiscal stewardship has resulted in such strong ratings and outlooks,” Jones said. “CHA is well-positioned to support its five-year capital plan that is critical to CHA expanding housing opportunities and helping meet the affordable housing needs of Chicago.”

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Press contacts:
Office of Communications – Chicago Housing Authority
Molly Sullivan: (312) 786-3344; msullivan (at) thecha (dot) org
Matthew Aguilar: (312) 935-2646; maguilar (at) thecha (dot) org

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The Chicago Housing Authority provides homes to more than 50,000 families and individuals, while supporting healthy communities in neighborhoods throughout the city. CHA has utilized the flexibility of the Moving To Work agreement to test innovative, locally-designed strategies that use federal dollars to more efficiently help residents become self-sufficient and to increase housing choices for low-income families. As a result, CHA families are more successful than ever before. In 2000, 15% of work-eligible heads-of-household were employed. Now more than 58% are employed. Also, the annual income of employed heads-of-household has doubled to more than $19,000 a year.

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