Rise Accepts Affordable Housing Champion Award for Emerald Ridge Development

March 29, 2016–On behalf of Emerald Ridge, Rise and the Southwestern Illinois Development Authority (SWIDA) accepted the 2016 Wyvetter H. Young Award in recognition of innovation and excellence in affordable housing at the 2016 Illinois Governor’s Conference on Affordable Housing at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Chicago.  The event is co-hosted by the Illinois Housing Council and Illinois Housing Development Authority.

Rise Community Development developed Emerald Ridge in partnership with the Southwestern Illinois Development Authority (SWIDA).  The grand opening for Emerald Ridge was held on April 20, 2015.  The redevelopment consists of 46 new single-family homes, with the majority of the homes occupied by existing neighborhood residents.  The new single-family homes are affordable to families earning 60% of the Area Median Income, which includes nearly two-thirds of the residents of East Alton.

“This is an acknowledgment of a remarkable collaborative effort,” said Stephen Acree, President of Rise.  “We share a sense of pride and accomplishment for this award but the most significant accomplishment is the transformation to this area of East Alton.”

Every year the Illinois Governor’s Conference on Affordable Housing awards three Affordable Housing Champion Awards for distinguished developments, initiatives or programs in affordable housing.  These nominees stand out for their commitment to serving the Annual Comprehensive Housing Plan focus areas and one or more of the State’s Priority Populations, and for having positive impacts on the community in which they are located.

About Rise (www.risestl.org) Rise is a nonprofit organization that partners with communities to build stronger, more equitable St. Louis area neighborhoods.  Rise develops both affordable and market-rate housing, particularly in neighborhoods with the potential to enhance economic diversity.  Rise has developed or assisted in over $675 million in neighborhood redevelopment in the St. Louis area.

About the Illinois Housing Council (www.ilhousing.org) Founded in 2002, the Illinois Housing Council (IHC), a statewide non-profit organization, was created to promote the stabilization of Illinois communities through the construction and preservation of affordable housing.  IHC is comprised of industry leaders committed to advancing our mission through education, information and constructive relationships with local, state and federal officials.

About the Illinois Housing Development Authority (www.ihda.org) The Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) creates opportunities for Illinois residents to build stronger futures. IHDA programs offer buyers and renters real options to make housing affordable.

About the Southwestern Illinois Development Authority (www.swida.org) The Southwestern Illinois Development Authority (SWIDA) is Southwestern Illinois’ hands-on regional economic development authority.  Through its partnerships with parties in the public and private sectors, the organization works to jumpstart investments in St. Louis’ Metro East region, helping to take plans off the drawing board and turn them into bricks and mortar.

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Rise Announces 2016 Collaborative Grant Recipients

Rise Community Development announces the recipients of its 2016 Regional Neighborhood Support Collaborative Grants.  The Collaborative Grant Program focuses on providing financial resources coupled with technical assistance to build the capacity and sustainability of non-profit community-based development organizations in the St. Louis metropolitan area. Participation in the program is by invitation only.  Since 1998, the program has made over $2.9 million in operating support grants to 21 local organizations.  In turn, these organizations have successfully developed over 1,400 homes and apartments, representing $278 million of new capital investments in St. Louis area neighborhoods.

The seven grant recipients are:

  1. DeSales Community Housing Corporation for continuation of its South Jefferson Collaborative community health initiative
  2. Northside Community Housing, Inc. for continuation of its community garden program
  3. LinkSTL and Grace Hill for a collaborative resident needs assessment, service referral and financial counseling program in the Old North St. Louis, Hyde Park and College Hill neighborhoods
  4. Lemay Housing Partnership to increase the capacity for its community newspaper
  5. Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corp.to grow its landlord training, tenant screening, and nuisance property abatement program
  6. Dutchtown South Community Corporation for its Friends of Pocket Park community engagement and park planning program
  7. Park Central Development Corporation for the development of community-driven neighborhood assessments and action plans

The total amount in grants awarded by Rise is $72,860.

Rise Collaborative Grant award winners will  be recognized at the 4th Annual Community Builders Network Awards Reception on Thursday, March 31, 2016, at T-Rex, – 911 Washington Avenue St. Louis, MO 63101.  The doors will open at 5:30 and the program will begin at 5:45. To learn more about the event and to register, click here.

To view the press release PDF, click here.

Rising Stars, New Innovative Program from Rise

Rise would like to announce its pilot “Rising Stars” Program. This program will serve as a mentorship, education and hands-on training program for exceptional university students or recent graduates interested in careers in community economic development in the St. Louis metropolitan area. Rise will provide education, supervision, professional development plans and otherwise prepare the Rising Stars for placement in real-world environments. Ultimately, our desire is to develop an emerging group of community development practitioners, “Rising Stars,” that can be placed in positions at local community development non-profit organizations, bank community development corporations and/or public sector planning and community development offices.

Rise was awarded a grant from the Opus Foundation for $25,000 in support of the pilot program. Earlier this year, Rise was invited by the Opus Foundation to submit a grant application to their Impact Fund in the Community Revitalization category and on December 2nd, Rise received notification that the application was successful. For our press release concerning the Opus Foundation’s funding click here.

The Rising Stars Program concept came about due to the need for capacity building in local Community Development Corporations (CDCs). Often, CDCs lack adequate staff to advance their mission and goals. However, with Rise as the intermediary in the Program, we have the ability to educate and develop an emerging group of practitioners through paid on the job training while building the capacity of  CDCs by placing its Rising Stars with them.

We will keep you informed as the program emerges in 2016.

Rise Receives Federal and State Tax Credits for Adams Grove Development

December 14, 2015–Rise Community Development received approval from the Missouri Housing Development Commission on December 4, 2015 for a reservation of tax credits for its Adams Grove affordable housing development. The development will consist of 50 townhomes and garden apartments, incorporating contemporary design, green building and universal design principles in the Forest Park Southeast neighborhood in the City of St. Louis.  The project architect is Trivers Associates and the general contractor will be Altman Charter.  The project is part of a larger, more collaborative effort with Forest West Properties, Inc. (FWP), a subsidiary of Washington University Medical Center Redevelopment Corporation (WUMCRC).  Forest West Properties has solicited numerous developers to build up to 150 additional market rate homes in the part of the neighborhood that lies south of Manchester.  Rise’s work in the Forest Park Southwest neighborhood, which began fifteen years ago, has been a major catalyst for the redevelopment of the neighborhood and the area now known as “The Grove.”

About Rise (www.risestl.org) Rise is a nonprofit organization that partners with communities to build stronger, more equitable St. Louis area neighborhoods.  Rise develops both affordable and market-rate housing, particularly in neighborhoods with the potential to enhance economic diversity.  Rise has developed or assisted in $700 million in neighborhood redevelopment in the St. Louis area.

About WUMCRC (www.wumcrc.com) Washington University Medical Center Redevelopment Corporation (WUMCRC), is a partnership between BJC Health Care and Washington University School of Medicine and works to improve the quality of life for the neighborhoods surrounding the medical campus. In order to achieve this goal in Forest Park Southeast and the Central West End , WUMCRC has invested millions of dollars toward regenerating the market for private investment in businesses and real estate, enhancing human and social service opportunities, and improving the level of physical and personal security.