Providence Community Housing Announces Reopening of St. Ann Square
NEW ORLEANS – Providence Community Housing has announced the the reopening of St. Ann Square, a 59-unit apartment property for low-income seniors in Tremé.
“Providence is thrilled to welcome seniors back home to St. Ann Square,” said Terri North, president and CEO of Providence Community Housing. “Our residents will enjoy fully renovated apartments and a beautifully landscaped campus in this historic neighborhood where many have family roots.”
Providence shared more information in a press release:
Located at the corner of Galvez and Ursulines, St. Ann Square has been an anchor for the historic neighborhood since the early 1900s when it served the community’s Catholic parishioners with a church and school building. The property was officially closed in the late 1970s after years of decline. However, the original St. Ann Shrine still graces the property and is a prominent destination for missionaries and prayer groups. Community members and parishioners of neighboring St. Peter Claver Church manage the upkeep of the shrine today.
In 2000, Ujamaa CDC, a neighborhood community action group, lead the development of the St. Ann Square property and converted the church and adjacent school building into senior apartments. Ujamaa CDC operated the property for low-income seniors until it was closed due to damage from Hurricane Katrina. In 2007, Providence Community Housing partnered with Ujamaa CDC to repair the Katrina-damaged buildings and re-open for its senior residents. Ongoing conversations about further developing the property with needed updates and upgrades began shortly after the property reopened.
In 2017, Providence Community Housing acquired the property and purchased the historic houses bordering the property from Ujamaa CDC, extending the footprint of the campus to include the block surrounding the original shrine. The expanded footprint includes a new two-story building, completely updated and upgraded apartments, as well as the conversion of four historic homes into apartments.
“I’m glad to see St. Ann Square come back,” said Brown Marks, Ujamaa CDC and a board member for Providence Community Housing. “Providence filled a need and made sure that our seniors could get back into their homes. It is important for the community to see that, even though there was a disruption, the neighborhood is back with the key ingredient they wanted to see in their community.”
In addition to spacious historic floor plans, each unit comes complete with green features to provide a healthy environment, ceiling fans, blinds, electric stoves, and refrigerators with freezers. All units are wired for phone, cable, and internet access. Residents also have access to Energy Star coin-operated washer and dryer units onsite.
While nine of the units are ADA compliant, all units in the project will include features that are tailored to the senior population including durable and comfortable vinyl plank flooring, and color contrasting countertops for impaired vision. In addition, five units are designed to Universal Design Type B standards. Residents are insured a safe living environment with secure on-site parking and controlled access to the buildings and landscaped campus, 24-hour CCTV cameras, onsite maintenance, and an experienced professional management team.
Linkage and referral services are available to residents and an on-site coordinator is available weekly to address resident needs. The St. Ann Square property also includes a quarter mile of walkway paths throughout the campus.
“Tremé is one of the oldest African American communities in the country. It is critically important that we take care of our elderly, our seniors, and provide for them the best means that we can,” said Deacon Allen Stevens of St. Peter Claver Church. “This brand-new renovated facility ensures that the community of seniors who reside here have the opportunity to live out the rest of their lives, possibly, in a facility that meets their needs” he added.
Certified as an Enterprise Green Community, the total development cost of the St. Ann Square project is $16,916,904 with financing provided through a 9% Low Income Housing Tax Credit allocation from the Louisiana Housing Corporation; federal and state historic tax credits through the National Park Service and the Louisiana Division of Historic Preservation; $875,000 Community Development Block Grant funds from the City of New Orleans, Office of Community and Economic Development; and a 40-year HUD mortgage through Capital One. Providence was also able to leverage $500,000 towards a pre-development loan from funds awarded through the Capital Magnet Fund.
With the St. Ann Square reopening, Providence has also moved its offices to the site to 2117 Ursulines Avenue, New Orleans, placing the nonprofit real estate development organization in the center of a community they have helped to rebuild for individuals and families.
“The move to St. Ann Square places Providence in the heart of a beloved New Orleans community where we have worked since 2006 to create a path to home that promotes the health and well-being of not only individuals, families, but entire communities,” says Terri North, Providence President and CEO. “We are proud to call St. Ann Square home.”
Providence Community Housing with Kimberly Finney Architect, LLC make up the design team for the St. Ann Square project. Milton J. Womack, Inc. served as the general contractor. Christopher Homes Inc. manages the property and is officed at 1119 N. Johnson Street.
The waiting list for St. Ann Square is now open. Low income seniors (age 62 and older) who are interested in applying to the waiting list can do so through the Housing Authority of New Orleans at https://hano.apply4housing.com. Additional leasing information can be obtained by calling 504-227-3313 or visiting https://www.christopherhomes.org/st-ann-square.
Christopher Homes, Inc. provides equal housing opportunities to all who apply. Each facility is open to all eligible people regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, age, familial status, or disabilities. Christopher Homes, Inc. is open to all faiths.
To learn more about St. Ann Square project or Providence Community Housing visit www.providencecommunityhousing.org.