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Over 200 affordable housing units being rehabbed in Old Northside

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Over 200 affordable housing units are being renovated in downtown Indianapolis.

“People who work hard everyday but don’t make as much money as some of their neighbors,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett, celebrating the halfway point of renovations to four affordable housing buildings in the Old Northside.

Merchants Affordable Housing Corp., the non-profit behind the project says it wants to change the face of what affordable housing looks like, and to do it, it’s investing $20 million.

“Our goal is to build a portfolio of the best units in the best neighborhoods and maintain them as long-term affordable housing,” said Janine Betsey, the executive director of the organization.

“They’re paying attention to these buildings they’re bringing them up to code, they’re making them real nice, real pretty,” said Alexis Miller, a long-term resident. “Those of us that work everyday, and get out and go do a really hard job, this is good, this is good you know.”

Miller lived in one of the nine building that used to be owned by Zender Family Limited Partnership. Four of those buildings are now being renovated by Merchants Affordable Housing Corp.

“Proof that when government at all levels partners with the private sector, things get done,” said Mayor Hogsett, speaking of the tax abatements approved by the City-County Council in 2015.

An average of $30,000 is being spent on each apartment for renovations including new windows, appliances, cabinets and heating/cooling systems.

And from the Old Northside they’re moving further north to the Kennedy King neighborhood. While some homes are already being renovated, others are still dilapidated. $1.2 million will be spent to rehab some of the homes there.

“Affordable homes, affordable living for all the residents of the city of Indianapolis,” said Mayor Hogsett.

People can apply immediately for the apartments in the Old Northside.

Potential residents can’t earn more than 60% of the median income for the city. That equals to no more than $28,020 for one person or $32,040 for two people.