Developer seeks tax abatement from city

A developer plans to seek a tax abatement from the city to construct workforce development housing on the east side of Columbus.

The $11 million project, to be known as Gladstone Apartments, would consist of 60 units, said Jeff Ryan, vice president of development with RealAmerica Development LLC of Fishers.

The complex would be built at 411 S. Gladstone Ave., currently used for single-family housing and a fruit and vegetable stand, Ryan said.

Details of the proposed development were shared Tuesday with the Columbus City Council, which voted 6-0 to declare the 2.49-acre site as an Economic Revitalization Area. Declaration of the ERA will require a second vote of approval June 19 by the council, which will also consider a tax abatement request for the project, said Robin Hilber, community development programs coordinator with the city.

Under the proposed plan, the three-story building would include 12 one-bedroom units, 36 two-bedroom units and 12 three-bedroom units, Ryan said.

A one-bedroom unit at Gladstone Apartments is expected to rent for $610 a month, a two-bedroom unit for $725 and a three-bedroom unit for $875, Hilber said. Those proposed rental rates are based on 60 percent of the city’s average median income, she said.

Workforce development housing is considered affordable housing, Hilber said.

The tax abatement, if approved, would be used to support RealAmerica’s application for tax credits that will be submitted to the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority on July 30, Ryan said.

RealAmerica expects to hear back about the tax credits in November. If awarded, the tax credits would finance about $8.8 million of the housing project, while the remainder of funding would come through loans, Ryan said.

The project is being targeted to individuals with annual incomes ranging from $25,000 to $46,000, he said.

The company chose Columbus as a site for workforce development housing due to the existing demand for housing, Ryan said.

“We’ve known the market is very tight,” he said.

RealAmerica Development LLC will also go before the Columbus Board of Zoning Appeals during its 6:30 p.m. meeting June 26 to seek conditional use approval for the project.

Construction of Gladstone Apartments would likely to begin in the spring of 2019 and would take about a year to build, Ryan said.

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Columbus City Council will consider a resolution establishing an Economic Revitalization Area and a tax abatement request for a proposed workforce development housing project during its June 19 meeting at Columbus City Hall, 123 Washington St.

The Columbus Board of Zoning Appeals will also consider whether to approve a conditional use for the project during its June 26 meeting, also at City Hall.

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The Columbus City Council has given final approval for $1 million in city funds to be used to retrofit a downtown building for the J. Irwin Miller Architecture Program of Indiana University. Page A3.