First Affordable Housing for Gay Seniors to Break Ground Next Month

By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor A $20 million affordable housing community for elderly gay seniors will break ground in October thanks to a grant from the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Authority. According to The Philadelphia Gay News, the $12 million low-income tax credits were purchased by Wells Fargo Bank, while the remaining $8 million is being [...]

A $20 million affordable housing community for elderly gay seniors will break ground in October thanks to a grant from the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Authority. According to The Philadelphia Gay News, the $12 million low-income tax credits were purchased by Wells Fargo Bank, while the remaining $8 million is being secured by city and state funding.

The development team led by a joint venture between the Dr. Magnus Hirschfield Fund and Pennrose Properties has already started cleaning up the site at 249-257 S. 13th Street in Philadelphia’s lively Washington Square West neighborhood, a property that until recently was owned by the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority.

Backed by Mark Segal, who serves as a publisher for The Philadelphia Gay News and president of the Dr. Magnus Hirschfield Fund, the project calls for a six-story building designed by WRT Design for low-income gay residents aged 62 and older. The L-shaped building will include 56 one-bedroom units and 2,700 square feet of ground floor commercial space that will be available for LGBT community purposes. The building will also feature common laundry facilities and a 6,000-square-foot courtyard that will be private to residents. Slated for completion for late 2013, the development will be the first affordable housing facility for the LGBT community in the city.

Though Philadelphia has one of the largest and most thriving LGBT communities in the country, housing options have always been a sensitive topic for community members according to a previous MHN story. By committing to this residential building, the development team hopes to offer some LGBT-friendly atmosphere in the growing “gayborhood” that’s taking shape in the area.

Rendering courtesy of WRT Design