NEW ORLEANS, May 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Four formerly vacant and blighted properties in Central City have been redeveloped into high-quality, affordable homes by Harmony Neighborhood Development with support from the Enterprise Louisiana Loan Fund. The homes are the first constructed under the fund, which brings $18 million in takeout financing for construction loans on new and renovated single-family homes for purchase by low-to moderate-income households in the city.
Managed by Enterprise Community Partners, Inc. (Enterprise), the fund leverages public dollars, provided by the State of Louisiana Office of Community Development- Disaster Recovery Unit, with private financing from the Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group and Enterprise to make loans to developers to repay single-family construction loans upon completion of construction. The fund helps developers access construction financing and reduce the carrying cost of the homes during the sales and marketing period.
The fund works in conjunction with local homebuyer counseling agencies and other state and local programs that provide subsidies for single-family construction and homeownership, including the Neighborhood Stabilization Program and City of New Orleans soft second mortgage program.
"Through this collaboration, we are able to address a gap in the market that was preventing developers from accessing the financing necessary to redevelop vacant single-family properties. Now healthy and affordable homes are being rebuilt in neighborhoods across the city, providing new homeownership opportunities for families and individuals while reducing blight," said Michelle Whetten, Enterprise vice president and Gulf Coast market leader. "We are proud to work with the State of Louisiana and Goldman Sachs to make this resource available to support the revitalization of New Orleans neighborhoods as part of Enterprise's investment of more than $220 million in the region since Hurricane Katrina."
Capital One Bank provided the construction loan for the homes, which are located a few blocks from Harmony Oaks, the former CJ Peete public housing complex, and the new Carter G. Woodson Middle School building, home to KIPP Central City Academy.
"The state of Louisiana has allocated more than $9 million in disaster recovery funding to the Enterprise Louisiana Loan Fund to spur the redevelopment of affordable housing in New Orleans. This program targets neighborhoods that still are blighted by vacant properties, eight years post-Katrina," said Pat Forbes, executive director of the state's Office of Community Development. "These four beautiful homes in the Harmony Neighborhood Development are the result of a public-private partnership that is committed to bringing neighborhoods back and providing our displaced workforce with critically needed, high-quality, low-cost housing."
The Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group provided $8.75 million in financing to the Enterprise Louisiana Loan Fund. "We are pleased to have worked with Enterprise and our public partners to bring affordable housing to Central City and other New Orleans neighborhoods that were hard hit by Katrina and are still struggling to fully recover," said Rachel Diller, vice president in the Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group. "This loan builds on our comprehensive approach to neighborhood revitalization in New Orleans through which we have provided financing for affordable housing, schools, hospitals and small businesses."
The Disaster Recovery Unit within the Office of Community Development is dedicated to helping Louisiana's citizens recover from hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Gustav and Ike. As the state's central point for hurricane recovery, the OCD-DRU manages the most extensive rebuilding effort in American history, working closely with local, state and federal partners to ensure that Louisiana recovers safer and stronger than before.
Enterprise is a leading provider of the development capital and expertise it takes to create decent, affordable homes and rebuild communities. For more than 30 years, Enterprise has introduced neighborhood solutions through public-private partnerships with financial institutions, governments, community organizations and others that share our vision. Enterprise has raised and invested more than $13.9 billion in equity, grants and loans to help build or preserve 300,000 affordable rental and for-sale homes to create vital communities. Visit www.EnterpriseCommunity.org and www.EnterpriseCommunity.com to learn more about Enterprise's efforts to build communities and opportunity.
Established in 2001, the Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group deploys the firm's capital by making investments and loans that benefit urban communities. Through its comprehensive community development platform, UIG is a catalyst in the revitalization of underserved neighborhoods. UIG has committed more than $2.8 billion, facilitating the creation and preservation of approximately 13,200 housing units - the majority of which are affordable to low, moderate and middle-income families - as well as nearly 1,300,000 square feet of community facility and more than 1,900,000 square feet of commercial and retail space.
SOURCE Enterprise Community Partners, Inc.