(SAVANNAH, GA) Sustainable Fellwood receives Low Income Housing Tax Credits

September 22, 2007 (PRLEAP.COM) Business News
Sustainable Fellwood has been awarded State and Federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs for the development of the first 110 multi-family units, enabling the planned 27-acre redevelopment in West Savannah to move forward.

“It will be a plus for the neighborhood as well as the people who will be living there … without a doubt,” said Kenneth R. Dunham Sr., president of West Savannah Community Organization. “It will tie in to what we’re trying to do in the community.” With its convenient location and features such as opportunities for job training, Sustainable Fellwood will benefit many people, Dunham said. “What’s happening now is they’re no longer able to pay rent because rent is extremely high,” he said.

Sustainable Fellwood is envisioned as a $50 million mixed-use development which will include public, affordable and market-rate multi-family housing, senior housing, single family homes, retail and commercial space, organic community gardens, and significant green park space.

“We applaud the action of the Department of Community Affairs in awarding the tax credits,” said Earline W. Davis, Executive Director of the Housing Authority of Savannah. “We see the development of Sustainable Fellwood as a major part of the economic revitalization of the West Savannah area. We know the development will exceed expectations of similarly redeveloped public housing neighborhoods and we are very anxious to get started.”

Groundbreaking for this Phase I is planned for Fall 2008, with occupancy in 2009.

Sustainable Fellwood has been accepted into the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED® for Neighborhood Development pilot program, is also part of Southface Energy Institute’s EarthCraft Communities on the Coast and will be guided by the Smart Growth Network’s principles for diverse, walkable, distinctive, attractive communities. These programs ensure that residents of this environmentally friendly community will also have energy efficient homes.

The first phase of Sustainable Fellwood will include the construction of 110 public/affordable housing units, infrastructure providing recreation and green space, and five single-family homes. The next phases will include additional housing units, single-family homes, senior housing, and retail space.
Earlier in the year, Sustainable Fellwood was designated an Enterprise Zone by the City of Savannah, which offers property tax abatements designed to keep rents low and attract businesses to the redeveloped area in west Savannah. Obtaining this designation provided crucial support for the project as the tax credits are allocated following a stringent competitive bidding process.

At the end of last year, the Housing Authority of Savannah granted Melaver, Inc. the opportunity to lead a team to redevelop the Fellwood Homes site. Melaver, Inc., a Savannah real estate company committed to sustainable development, has partnered with Parallel Housing, Inc., (Athens), Progressive Redevelopment, Inc., (Decatur) and Vanguard Inc., (Savannah) to present the application for these tax credits to the Georgia DCA.

Sustainable Fellwood involves a close collaboration between the Housing Authority of Savannah, the City of Savannah, Community Housing Services Agency Development Inc, and the West Savannah Neighborhood Association. The architect for this project is the local firm. Lott + Barber Architects. For more information about Sustainable Fellwood, visit www.sustainablefellwood.com.