May 14Bellwether Housing and Mercy Housing Northwest break ground on new affordable housing development in Roosevelt
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SEATTLE — Bellwether Housing and Mercy Housing Northwest will break ground this week on Cedar Crossing, a new 254-apartment affordable housing development at 6600 Roosevelt Way NE. Cedar Crossing, slated for completion in 2022, includes innovative community partnerships with Sound Transit, Mary’s Place, Seattle Children’s Hospital and El Centro de la Raza.
Cedar Crossing is adjacent to the Roosevelt Link light rail station, set to open in 2021, and was made possible by Sound Transit and the Seattle Office of Housing, who partnered by offering the property at a discounted land price and committed $15 million in funds from the Seattle Housing Levy.
“In these times, the value of a safe, stable, affordable home is more apparent than ever. The Office of Housing is pleased to celebrate the groundbreaking of Cedar Crossing, which delivers on a community vision to bring hundreds of new affordable homes and community amenities to a thriving neighborhood at the Roosevelt Light Rail station,” said Emily Alvarado, Director of the Office of Housing.
Said Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff: “Sound Transit, working with our partners at the Federal Transit Administration’s joint development program, was proud to forego $11.7 million in selling this property at a discount to ensure that it would be used to create the affordable housing so desperately needed in our region.”
Cedar Crossing will provide affordable homes to families making between zero to 60 percent of the area median income, who struggle to find affordable housing options, including 87 two- and three-bedroom apartments. A public plaza will create a sense of place in the neighborhood and provide pedestrian access to the light rail station. The building will also feature a playground, social service offices, ground floor retail, and a large community room for celebrations and gatherings.
In a partnership with Mary’s Place and Children’s Hospital, 20 apartments will be set aside for families simultaneously experiencing homelessness and caring for children with a chronic health condition.
“When a family has a child in the hospital, the last thing they should have to worry about is not having a stable place to call home,” said Suzanne Petersen Tanneberg, Vice President of External Affairs and Guest Services at Seattle Children’s. “We are incredibly grateful that our community is coming together to offer this affordable housing option to the patients and families we serve, so families can stay focused on their child.”
“We are grateful to be a part of this incredible project to provide affordable housing,” said Marty Hartman, Executive Director of Mary’s Place, a network of shelter for families who are experiencing homelessness. “These affordable and larger units are life-saving for families who have lost everything waiting for their child’s miracle. These are children with wheelchairs or other medical equipment whose families need a place that is easily accessible to medical care and resources. What a tremendous asset for our community!”
El Centro de La Raza will run a multi-cultural, bilingual affordable child care on site, with capacity to serve 68 children.
“El Centro de la Raza’s Jose Marti Child Development Center is honored and privileged to partner with Mercy Housing Northwest and Bellwether Housing,” said Estela Ortega, executive director. “We will provide a high-quality bilingual, bicultural curriculum emphasizing cultural diversity, social justice and family involvement.”
The Roosevelt Neighborhood Association (RNA) was an early supporter of the project, requesting deep affordability, large units for families and a community gathering room. The RNA wanted to create a sense of place. “Early neighborhood advocacy for shifting the light rail station to this central location is the basis for supporting much more housing. The Roosevelt community fully supported the 100 percent affordable housing and child care components of this project from the onset, in addition to advocating for a strong pedestrian and commercial character on this key site, and look forward to this rewarding project,” said Jay Lazerwitz, RNA Land Use Committee Chair.”
The partnership between Bellwether Housing and Mercy Housing Northwest gave the organizations a unique opportunity to build to scale, share risk and leverage complementary strengths. Mercy Housing Northwest will provide on-site resident services, and Bellwether Housing will be the property manager.
Cedar Crossing is the second of four Bellwether developments that will break ground over the next 12 months, as part of Bellwether’s Building Opportunity Campaign aiming to create 750 new affordable homes by 2022. Cedar Crossing is partially funded by Bellwether’s landmark campaign to raise private impact investments, including crowdfunding. The campaign raised $4.7 million for these developments. Cedar Crossing is also financed by The City of Seattle, King County, the Seattle Housing Authority, federal low income housing tax credits purchased by U.S. Bank and a tax-exempt loans provided by U.S. Bank and Citibank
About Bellwether Housing:
Bellwether Housing is the largest private, nonprofit affordable housing provider in Seattle. Bellwether has developed, owned and operated housing for low-income individuals, families, seniors and households transitioning out of homelessness since 1980 –in total, 2,100 apartments in 32 buildings throughout Seattle.
About Mercy Housing Northwest:
Since 1991, Mercy Housing Northwest (MHNW) has provided affordable homes to people with low incomes, including families, seniors, people who have experienced homelessness, and people with disabilities. With 54 properties in Washington and Idaho, MHNW serves more than 5,600 people every day. MHNW supplements much of its housing with Resident Services, programs that help residents build stable lives. MHNW is a regional branch of Mercy Housing, Inc. (MHI), a leading national affordable housing nonprofit