The grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony for St. Ferdinand Homes II took place today at 1 PM on a warm, sunny, fantastic day, hosted by Northside Community Housing, Inc. (NCHI). Dignitaries, residents of the neighborhood, and others took part in this celebration of 36 new and 7 fully renovated mixed-income apartments and townhomes along with a new street front office space. St. Ferdinand Homes II continues the revitalization of the Ville and Greater Ville neighborhood, replacing 13 derelict buildings and multiple vacant lots with 9 new buildings and 3 rehabbed buildings. Rise provided consulting assistance to NCHI for the project. NCHI has collaborated with the Metropolitan Sewer District (MSD) to incorporate onsite green infrastructure and rainscaping features as part of MSD’s Project Clear initiative. In all, NCHI has developed 301 rental, lease-purchase, and for sale homes, including 87 homes adjacent to St. Ferdinand Homes II.
Sal Martinez, CEO of Employment Connection, emceed the event in his usual welcoming, gregarious style.
Esteemed speakers included:
Sherry R. Faulkner — Counsel and Director of Community Affairs, The Office of Rep. Wm. Lacy Clay
Dwinderlin Evans — Committeewoman of the 4th Ward (on behalf of Alderman Samuel Moore)
Matt Moak — Executive Director, Community Development Administration
April Ford Griffin — Executive Director, Affordable Housing Commission
John F. Kennedy — President and CEO, St. Louis Equity Fund, Inc.
Stephen Acree — President, Rise Community Development
Phil Minden — Board Chairman, Northside Community Housing, Inc./Executive Vice President, LIHTC Specialist, Sterling Bank
Michael Burns — President, Northside Community Housing, Inc.
The event was dedicated in loving memory of Father William Hutchison and Mrs. O’Dell Wood and a special moment of silence was given at the opening of the ceremony. They both passed last year and both had strong connections to the project. Father Hutchison was the founder of Northside Community Center and founder of Northside Community Housing, Inc. Mrs. Wood lived on the corner St. Ferdinand and Bishop Scott for 72 years. Before that, she lived in the 4300 block of St. Ferdinand, went to St. James Church, and attended Poro College. After moving out of the neighborhood, she sold her property to NCHI and was very excited about St. Ferdinand Homes II. Mrs. Wood’s son in law, Garland Barnes provided heartfelt remarks concerning her connection to the neighborhood.
Development Team for St. Ferdinand Homes II:
Managing General Partner: Northside Community Housing, Inc.
Development Consultant: Rise
Property Manager: Fox Grove Management
Social Service Provider: Northside Community Housing
Attorney: Thomas A. Duda
Architect: St. Louis Design Alliance
Mechanical Electrical Plumbing Engineer: ABNA Engineering
Civil Engineer: ABNA Engineering
General Contractor E.M. Harris Construction
Federal LIHTC Investor: ST. Louis Equity Fund, Inc.
State LIHTC Investor: ST. Louis Equity Fund, Inc.
Construction Lender: Gateway Community Development Fund, Inc.
Permanent Lender: Gateway Community Development Fund, Inc.
Today’s event is another chapter in the reinvigoration and revitalization of the Ville and Greater Ville neighborhoods. Thanks so much to everyone involved and everyone who attended!
Photo credit goes to Tim Parker and Larry Perlmutter.