The need for affordable housing in the Truckee Meadows received a boost to curb the problem with the groundbreaking of Vintage at The Crossings, a senior living community project in the South Meadows.
A groundbreaking ceremony was held on Monday, Oct. 3. The project’s development is a partnership between Vintage Housing, an affordable housing developer based out of Newport Beach, Calif.; and GreenStreet Companies, a multifamily housing development company headquartered in Reno.
The community will be located on what is currently a five-acre lot next to the South Towne Crossing shopping center and near the intersection of Old Virginia Road and Damonte Ranch Parkway.
Vintage at The Crossings is slated to move-in ready by next summer.
“It usually takes about 15-16 months for a project like this to get done and be available for people to move in,” said Ryan Patterson, president of Vintage Housing.
The five-story, 230-unit project will feature state-of-the art, energy efficient one- and two-bedroom apartments for low-income senior citizens aged 55 and above. Rental rates will vary from $500 to $800 a month.
“We’re basically less than half of what market would be,” said Dane Hillyard, principal at GreenStreet Companies.
Individual units will range from 580- to 800-square-feet along with several 3,000- to 4,000-square-foot community rooms for residents to enjoy activities such as crafts or social gatherings.
Patterson said there may be some minor modifications as construction goes along.
“There is an active dialogue from seniors and the community on what they need,” he said.
The developers and city officials felt the location was ideal for seniors with close proximity to shopping outlets at Walmart Supercenter behind the property and medical services including Renown Medical Center’s South Meadows campus. They felt the South Reno area was underserved with available senior housing.
It is the first large-scale affordable housing project initiated in Reno in 10 years, according to city officials. The project was also made possible by a partnership between the City of Reno, the Washoe County HOME Consortium and the state of Nevada housing agencies.
Duerr indicated the city is looking at various innovative partnerships, either to streamline the permitting process or to find assistance in financing projects to bring future housing projects to fruition.
The Washoe County HOME Consortium, for example, is an agreement between Reno, Sparks and county governments to provide loans from various sources to finance development or rehabilitation of housing communities, among other services.
The Washoe County HOME Consortium provided a loan to help get the Vintage project off the ground.
Neeser Construction, Inc., based out of Anchorage, Alaska, will serve as the general contractor, and plans to hire as many local subcontractors as possible.
“You have to have a fairly big company for this type of project because of the financing requirements, and (Neeser) is a big company so they could do it,” Hillyard said.
The project is touted as a big first step into the growing concern over affordable housing in Reno-Sparks for all age groups and economic backgrounds, especially with more and more people moving into the area. Reno City councilmember Naomi Duerr said there has been much discussion from city officials on the topics and cited other affordable housing projects on the horizon.
“Obviously with so many people moving here housing is a key element,” Duerr said. “If you don’t have a place to live, you’re not going to come here. We’ve got to encourage people from all economic levels to live here.”
Duerr said the new senior living community is part of a plan to add more affordable housing options. Duerr mentioned the 44-unit project currently under construction by Virginia Lake and the Summit Club project near Mount Rose High in South Reno that will feature affordable housing units.
“A lot of people are feeling the pinch,” Duerr said. “Rents are going very high or there’s a shortage of housing even if you have money. We’ve got to be a city for all people.”
Duerr and Hillyard indicated the new construction will help alleviate some the affordable housing shortage, but there’s still a long way to go.
“There is a huge housing shortage … this will just make a small dent,” Hillyard said.
For video and more: South Reno senior affordable housing project breaks ground