ABOVE PHOTO: The Philadelphia Housing Authority held a grand opening for Harrison Plaza Senior Tower, a newly renovated building of affordable housing for seniors, on February 28. (From left): PHA board chair Lynette Brown-Sow; Gwendolyn Boyd-White, daughter of PHA honoree Christine Boyd; City Council President Darrell L. Clarke; Cynthia Boyd; Adrianne Todman, deputy secretary of HUD, and far right, Kelvin A. Jeremiah, president and CEO of PHA. (Photo/PHA)
The Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA) recently celebrated the preservation and renovation of Harrison Plaza Senior Tower, a 15-story high-rise that offers seniors an affordable, comfortable and secure living experience.
The building, located at 10th & Master Streets, features energy-efficient appliances, and units with grab bars and other life safety features that offer older residents peace of mind. In addition to the complete redesign of the residential units and ground floor, the exterior of the building has been significantly renovated, including repointing of the entire building, selective brick and sill replacement, and new insulated aluminum and glass awning windows.
“This newly renovated building allows Philly seniors to age well, and, with dignity. PHA preserved a 67-year-old landmark and, in doing so, transformed an aging tower of public housing in urgent need of costly repairs,” said Kelvin A. Jeremiah, president and CEO of PHA. “Low-Income Housing Tax Credits were crucial for this transformation. They are critical to address preservation, development and redevelopment goals.”
“Harrison Plaza is a wonderful example of how federal, state, and local leaders can create high-quality and affordable homes,” said Adrianne Todman, HUD’s deputy secretary. “Through HUD’s Rental Assistance Demonstration process, Philadelphia’s local housing authority was able to modernize and preserve an elemental property in the heart of the city. The impact of our collective work will certainly be felt by the seniors who live here and for those seniors seeking an affordable place to live in the future.”
The new Harrison Plaza Senior Tower, a 4% Low-Income Housing Tax Credit gut renovation, has a total of 116 units, consisting of 104 one-bedroom and 12 two-bedroom units, a community room with an outdoor patio, health screening room, management and maintenance offices, a common laundry, and a 15-space parking lot.
“I’m pleased to see this 116-unit building preserved and renovated, and I’m optimistic that the major affordable-housing investments we passed in the last two years under President Biden’s leadership will result in more progress for Philadelphia!” U.S. Rep. Dwight Evans (D-3rd Dist.) said.
“We’re proud to support the preservation and renovation of the Harrison Plaza Senior Tower for our senior citizens who need safe, modern and affordable housing,” said City Council President Darrell L. Clarke. “This is also a project that makes sense – renovating existing housing stock where possible, as opposed to always relying on new construction, which is more costly. We’re delighted to work with our strong partners at the Philadelphia Housing Authority and Kelvin Jeremiah in support of this renovation for senior citizens.”
PHA converted the Harrison Plaza to Project Based Voucher (PBV) assistance under the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) Program. One of the major benefits of RAD conversion is that it enables leveraging of new financial resources to improve living conditions and address the long-term capital needs of public housing developments either through renovations to existing buildings or the development of new replacement housing units.
The total development costs are approximately $48 million, which includes a $6 million acquisition cost of the building, and construction costs of approximately $37 million.
Perryman Shoemaker was awarded the construction management contract.
Perryman Shoemaker is proud of their work with PHA to transform the Harrison Plaza tower into a safe, modern, and comfortable home for senior residents in North Philadelphia, Angelo Perryman, president and CEO of Perryman Construction, and Maura Hesdon, general manager of Shoemaker Construction Co., said.
The Philadelphia Housing Authority’s mission is to open doors to affordable housing, economic, opportunities, and safe sustainable communities to benefit Philadelphia residents with low incomes. To learn more, visit: www.pha.phila.gov.
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