The Frederick Historic Preservation Commission voted 6-1 Thursday night to approve the application for a low-income housing project as submitted, paving the way for new affordable housing options in the city.
Commissioner Thomas Hornyak was the lone “no” vote.
The commission took up five votes regarding properties on West South Street — including locations at 110, 124, 126 and 130 W. South St — as well as on 203 Broadway in Frederick. The commission’s decision is another step toward the construction of South Street Centre at those locations, which will offer 152 homes for low-income residents and seniors.
While the project won’t be a public housing initiative, the apartments also won’t be available at a market rate price. Instead, the South Street initiative finds itself in what Angie Liddiard, economic development director for the Frederick Housing Authority, labeled earlier this week as an in-between space that will offer housing at a price not necessarily labeled as one that provides “huge savings.”
In addition to the 152 apartments, the project, which is partially funded by a tax credit the city was recently awarded, will also feature such amenities as a community room, a fitness center, office space and a day care center. According to Liddiard, the tax credit will ensure that the project won’t have to be subsidized.
Because the credit will fund part of the construction, the money to get it up and running won’t have to be paid back, which in turn changes the operating budget enough to be able to offer residents slightly lower rent. The commission’s vote Thursday night was just another step toward offering enough affordable housing for the city’s residents, which is something Liddiard said is a process that is a long way from being completed.
“The goal is to try and help people be able to afford their housing and move into a more financially stable position,” she said Wednesday. But, she cautioned, “we’re still more than 4,000 units short of units to live in.”