Mayor Levar Stoney and Local Leaders Join CPDC To Break Ground on $30 million Mixed-Income, Mixed-Use Development in Jackson Ward

RICHMOND, VA, Sept 25, 2018 – Community Preservation and Development Corporation (CPDC) broke ground today on the $30 million Jackson Ward development. The announcement came at a ceremony featuring remarks by City of Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney, Richmond Councilmember Kimberly B. Gray, and other officials and business leaders. The future complex will offer 154 energy-efficient, modern homes as well as 6,000 square feet of new commercial retail space.

“Today is about taking care of our seniors and taking another step in our goal to provide quality affordable and mixed-income housing opportunities in our city,” said Richmond Mayor Levar M. Stoney. “By working together with our local and state stakeholders in this public, private and nonprofit partnership, this project will help continue the revitalization of our historic Jackson Ward neighborhood — once a hub of commerce, culture and entertainment in the South that can be so again.”

One building in the development – Jackson Ward Senior Homes — will be new construction dedicated to 72 homes for low-income seniors. An adjacent mixed-income building — Jackson Ward Multifamily Homes — will feature 82 apartments, including 36 affordable units preserved for workforce housing. This project redevelops a site that has been vacant for many years and re-knits a portion of an historic neighborhood was scarred by construction of a highway.

The residents of Jackson Ward Senior Housing will be moving from the aging, isolated Fay Towers into the modern, accessible, energy-efficient homes that are priced affordably for their incomes. It will be the second phase in a three-part process of enabling more than 200 Fay Towers residents to live in better homes. The first stage was completed last year, when 77 seniors moved into the former Highland Park School, which was fully renovated. The final phase will begin next year when the former Baker School will be converted into additional homes.

The residents of Jackson Ward will be better connected to important resources, including public transportation, retail, and they will continue to benefit from CPDC’s Community Impact Strategies, supportive resident programs in areas such as personal finance, nutrition, health and safety.

“Our commitment to Richmond started in 2014 when we began working with the residents of Fay Towers to provide affordable, well-designed homes,” said J. Michael Pitchford, president and CEO of CPDC. “We completed the first phase of this project last year with the rehabilitation of Highland Park School, and Jackson Ward continues the fulfillment of our promise. This development, which would not have happened without our exceptional partners, is also helping revitalize a neighborhood crucial to Richmond’s heritage — and to its future.”

The complex will also feature 6,000 square feet of much-needed retail space. This commercial space will be created through the adaptive reuse of a former convent originally associated with Richmond’s first African American Catholic Church.

This development relied on creative public-private partnership. CPDC and Enterprise Community Partners (CPDC is an affiliate of Enterprise) collaborated with six government agencies, including the City of Richmond, the Federal Home Loan Bank, the Richmond Redevelopment and Housing Authority, the State of Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, the Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA), and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and one private funder, SunTrust Bank.

“VHDA remains focused on working with partners like CPDC to increase the amount of affordable housing available to Virginians, especially here in Richmond where the need is great,” said VHDA Executive Director Susan Dewey. “We are pleased that the Jackson Ward developments will be creating more housing opportunities in a historic neighborhood for families, seniors, and persons with disabilities. Together with CPDC, local governments, and our other partners, VHDA is proud to see these projects move from concept to reality.”

Crucial elements of the development were the Low Income Housing Tax Credit, the federal program that finances over 90 percent of America’s low-income housing, and HUD’s Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program, which Congress created in 2012 to preserve and improve public housing, and. CPDC’s work to move residents from Fay Towers is the first in Virginia to use RAD’s “transfer of assistance” provision, which enables public housing authorities to create better housing in new locations.

Grimm and Parker is the project architect and Harkins Builders, Inc. is the general contractors.
The groundbreaking ceremony featured remarks from Christopher LoPiano, CPDC Senior Vice President for Real Estate; Orlando C. Artze, RRHA Interim Executive Director; Charles R. Werhane, President & CEO of Enterprise Community Investment, Inc. and CPDC Chairman of Board; Councilwoman Gray; Steve Smith, Senior Vice President, SunTrust Community Capital, LLC; Executive Director Dewey of VHDA; Matt Engel, CPDC Senior Development Officer, and closing remarks by Mayor Stoney.


A premier provider of affordable housing in Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia, Community Preservation and Development Corporation (CPDC) develops vibrant communities through innovation and partnership, including its new combination with Enterprise Community Partners. Specializing in the acquisition, redevelopment and operation of affordable housing for low- and moderate-income individuals and families, CPDC owns 30 communities with more than 5,300 apartment homes, and many of its properties offer resident engagement programs that collectively serve more than 10,000 residents.

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