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Centennial Village

Reinvestment Fund’s flexible financing is bridging the funding gap for an affordable housing project in West Philadelphia.

The Centennial Village development is removing a major obstacle to renewal in West Parkside, by redeveloping an abandoned gas station, shell building and a series of publicly-owned vacant lots. This area is still recovering from the long period of de-industrialization and disinvestment that has afflicted many Philadelphia neighborhoods. The developer, Community Ventures, is an experienced nonprofit developer of affordable housing.

This was a unique loan for Reinvestment Fund: PNC Bank, which provided the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) equity and a bridge loan, required that Community Ventures pledge a cash reserve to support its guaranty. Our loan filled the gap to meet the reserve requirement, allowing the project to move forward.

Centennial Village includes the construction of a 30-unit apartment building, a 6-unit building, one duplex, and 14 single family homes all located in the vicinity of 52nd Street and Parkside Avenue. This is a culmination of a multi-year planning process. In 2011, with the completion of the Centennial District Economic Development Strategy, Community Ventures partnered with the Parkside Association to hold a planning charette that included community representatives, city planners, and representatives of the Commerce Department. This process informed the project’s final design, including greenspace and ground floor retail along the 52nd Street corridor.

Within a one mile radius of Centennial Village, there are nearly 5,000 jobs, including at least 2,700 that are accessible to those without college degrees. In addition, the area is very well served by public transit—four bus routes and a trolley line stop nearby.

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