Affordable housing project finds a home in Springfield

Mulberry Springs will offer 30 apartments on north side of city and 10 duplexes on south side.

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

A $10 million permanent supportive housing project that has been in the works since 2018 took a significant step forward.

Springfield City Commissioners this month worked on their continuing effort to expand affordable housing opportunities in the community by passing a resolution to invest $1.1 million in the Mulberry Springs project.

City officials will tap into American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to cover their portion of the cost, with state and federal funding earmarked for the balance.

Officials with the city credited the offices of U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown and State Sen. Bob Hackett for assisting with state and federal funding for the project.

The Mulberry Springs development will include multiple duplex properties on scattered sites on the south side of the city as well as a multi-family complex on the north side of the city.

Community Development Department Director Shannon Meadows indicated the duplexes, which will be a total of 10 three-bedroom units, will be located on sites along West Mulberry Street and on West Southern Avenue on the south side, while the 30-unit multi-family apartment house will be located on Roosevelt Drive on the north side.

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

A previous proposal for location of the housing was passed over when residents of the prospective location voiced opposition to rezoning the area to permit construction. The newly announced locations are already zoned for such development.

“It’s so critical to add permanent supportive housing to our portfolio,” Meadows said of the project.

She said the developer, Buckeye Community Hope Foundation, based in Columbus, is familiar to the city, having already successfully completed multiple affordable housing projects locally, including Community Gardens, Hayden House senior living community and the upcoming Rose Commons family housing development on the city’s west side.

“They bring a great deal of knowledge and success with them and manage their own developments, providing supportive services to ensure stability and independence for their residents,” Meadows said.

Buckeye Community Hope Foundation partners with local service agencies and has a dedicated support services coordinator on site to link residents to services including Medicare/Medicaid, transportation, job training, after school care and counseling.

Meadows said groundbreaking for the development will likely take place in the third or fourth quarter of 2024, with completion typically taking about 13 months from first shovel to the welcoming of residents.

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