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Harrison Park and Pine Avenue Grand Opening

Posted by dwellingplacegr on June 30, 2020
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We invite you to celebrate the Harrison Park and Pine Avenue affordable housing developments with us. This virtual celebration will walk you through our creation of two unique housing developments in the West Grand Neighborhood. You will meet residents and hear their stories. You will be introduced to the community partners and get an understanding for why they are committed to this work. Finally, you will get to peek inside these beautiful new apartments and see how we combine affordability and dignity to create spaces our residents are proud to call home! 

Why Affordable Housing

Harrison Park and Pine Avenue Apartments showcase what can happen when a cross sector of organizations and partners come together around a common cause. The west side of Grand Rapids has seen an explosion of development over the past 5 years. Dwelling Place answered the call to preserve housing affordability for families who were facing the negative sides of gentrification in the community they called home.

These developments will add 71 new homes to the West Grand Neighborhood. In total, the two developments will boast 59 three-bedroom apartments and townhomes and 19 two-bedroom apartments. In an added effort to serve families who already called the west side home we created a preference for families with children enrolled in the Challenge Scholars program. Working alongside the Grand Rapids Community Foundation and Grand Rapids Public Schools we are working to ensure these families can keep their children enrolled in this beneficial program that will result in free college tuition and wrap around services for their post-secondary education.

“The Westside is a very proud, close-knit community and Dwelling Place made sure there were affordable apartments specifically for our Challenge Scholars families, so the could remain in the area and benefit from the program.”

Diana Sieger, President of Grand Rapids Community Foundation. Pictured at Our Westside Story, a Dwelling Place fundraiser in celebration of community collaboration on Grand Rapids west side.

“I wanted a place I was proud of and this is the best place I have ever lived in. I needed a place that kept my son enrolled in Challenge Scholars and gave him a safe space to play outside. I found those things and more in my new home and I can’t wait for what the future holds for my family. I’ve found a sense of community in Brittany, Sarah, and my neighbors and I know they are there for me when I need them. I am grateful for that.”

Whitney Lee and her family outside their new home at Pine Avenue Townhomes.

 

Our Partners

Collaboration is essential to this work and these developments would not be possible without support from community partners. Dwelling Place is grateful for each and every partner that stepped up to help us answer the call to bring more affordable housing to Grand Rapids west side. 

 

“Having affordable housing options designed for families will have lasting positive impacts for our schools and our neighborhoods. Dwelling Place continues to lead and innovate in providing these opportunities for families.”

John O’Connor, First Ward City Commissioner and proud Westside business owner. 

 

“At a time when one in four households struggle to pay rent, providing affordable housing is more important than ever. Harrison Park Apartments fills a critical need on the west side of Grand Rapids, ensuring families have access to affordable housing and the benefits provided by the Challenge Scholars program. This project was a truly collaborative effort that would not have been possible without the support of so many partners. Cinnaire is pleased to join Dwelling Place, our public and private partners to support this project and to help address Grand Rapids affordable housing challenges. Harrison Park is a significant achievement. We extend congratulations to the development team as we celebrate the grand opening for Harrison Park!”

Ben Stehouwer, Vice President of Underwriting for Cinnaire. Cinnaire is a funding partner vital to the development of these projects. 

“Everytime I drive by this building I will be reminded of the commitment from Dwelling Place to listen and honor this community with a desire to help as many children as possible stay in this neighborhood so they can benefit from the Challenge Scholars program – I am certain this project will have a generational impact for Westside families”

Kurt Ruppart, First Ward City Commissioner and former Director of Otherway Ministries who initiated the conversations that lead to these developments.

 

“Investing in Harrison Park and Pine Avenue Apartments speaks to our mission of providing quality housing that is affordable. This is a cornerstone of diverse, thriving communities. Everyone in this west side neighborhood deserves a safe, decent, and quality place to live regardless of their income or life circumstances. We hope these homes provide a foundation where all who live there can reach their full potential.”

Gary Heidel, Acting Director of Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) who manages and oversees federal Low Income Housing Tax Credit projects across Michigan.

Harrison Park Apartments and Townhomes

Harrison Park was constructed with a variety of different layouts so we could maximize the use of space. There are two story interior and exterior town homes and one story apartments throughout the building. A large community room with full kitchen will allow for resident gatherings throughout the year. This property also has several layers of funding, provide affordable housing for working families, supportive housing for families experiencing domestic violence, and income-based through referrals from the Grand Rapids Housing Commission.

Commercial Live/Work at Harrison Park

Three of the townhomes at Harrison Park are live/work units for business owners and/or creatives looking to live and operate a business under the same roof. These commercial storefronts sit along bustling Alpine Avenue with newly paved sidewalks and available street parking right out front. The spaces boast an open storefront space on the first floor with large storage closets, bathroom, and industrial wash sink. The second floor has a full kitchen and bath, open living space, washer and dryer, a single bedroom, and pantry.

Pine Avenue Apartments and Townhomes

Pine Avenue Apartments and townhomes replaced what was formally West Side Christian Elementary. This series of new buildings breathed new life into a quiet neighborhood just off Leonard Street. Each space boasts three bedrooms, 1.5 bathrooms, full kitchen, washer & dryer, and ample storage area. This property provides affordable housing for working families, income based housing through Grand Rapids Housing Commission, and referrals from the YWCA.

Community Gardening

Dwelling Place believes that community gardening is not just a way to bring fresh food access to our residents but a fundamental way to build a sense of community and belonging at our properties. Both the Harrison Park and Pine Avenue developments have garden plots and residents have already started planting with the help of our Community Garden Coordinator, Jonathan DeHaan.

Meet Our Staff

Dwelling Place truly does have amazing staff! On-site property staff really get a chance to bond with our residents form relationships. From managing day to day rental tasks and work orders to connecting residents to resources and hosting garden events these individuals meet our residents where they are at and help to create a sense of community at the properties. 

Sarah Ellis

Property Manager

Brittany Paris

Resident Service Coordinator

Jonathan DeHann

Community Gardening Coordinator

Joe Gomez

Maintenance Tech

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