KANSAS CITY, MO - The Community Development Trust ("CDT"), a national investor in affordable housing, has announced a new $1.8 million equity investment in Kensington Heights Apartments, a nine-story, 126-unit affordable housing apartment building in Kansas City, Mo., that serves low-income senior citizens and people with disabilities.
CDT acquired the property through a joint venture with Cleveland-based The Millennia Companies ("Millennia"), a developer and management company that manages over 20,000 units of affordable housing throughout the Midwest, Southeast and Mid-Atlantic regions. Millennia owns and manages three other affordable housing properties in the Kansas City area.
The transaction is CDT's first equity investment in Missouri and its first acquisition with Millennia. Through their joint venture, CDT and Millennia will complete $580,000 of capital improvements that will ensure Kensington Heights Apartments is maintained as high-quality affordable housing for elderly and disabled residents. These improvements will include renovating all of the community areas in the 36-year-old building as well as installing new high-efficiency boilers.
"We are delighted to partner with Millennia, a group that we believe is well-aligned with our double-bottom-line philosophy here at CDT," said Brian Dowling, Senior Vice President of Community Investments at CDT. "Millennia is perennially recognized as among the nation's best-performing affordable housing developers, and we look forward to pursuing more acquisitions with them in 2017."
Kensington Heights Apartments is conveniently located near Interstate 70 and U.S. Highway 40, and is approximately ten minutes from downtown Kansas City. The complex serves residents who earn 60 percent of the area median income and benefits from a full-time service coordinator who helps residents access and navigate essential support services.
"Our mission is to provide the highest quality of standards in the management, operation and development of affordable and market rate rental housing, thereby striving to enrich the quality of life for our residents," said The Millennia Companies President and CEO Frank T. Sinito. "Teaming up with CDT to help preserve affordable housing in the Kansas City metro area reflects our commitment to serving low-income residents and the community's most vulnerable citizens."
In 2014, the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University calculated that 44 percent of renters in the Kansas City metro area, or approximately 126,000 renter households, were cost burdened. That designation means the households spend more than 30 percent of their income on housing costs. The report also shows 22 percent of those households were severely cost burdened, spending more than half of their income on housing costs.
Local government and civic leaders in Kansas City have embarked on an ambitious plan in 2017 toward taking meaningful actions that will address significant disparities in housing needs and access to opportunity.
"We applaud CDT and Millennia for their efforts to better serve our residents," said Kansas City Third District Councilman Jermaine Reed, who represents constituents in the Kensington Heights building. "Their accomplishment is a 'win-win' for everyone, by improving housing and providing residents with the peace of mind that their apartments will remain affordable for generations to come."