Archive for Thursday, December 18, 2003

Complex targets low-income elderly

December 18, 2003

Plans are still under way for construction of Tonganoxie Sundance, a low-income housing development for people who are 55 and older.

"We plan on breaking ground in the spring," said Bob Rousey, manager of Cohen-Esrey Development, Kansas City, Mo.

"It usually takes six to eight months for completion," Rousey said. "So, late in 2004, we should be able to start accepting applications."

Rousey projected that the apartments will rent for $485 a month. This will include water and trash service. Residents would pay for their own electricity and gas.

The 24-apartment complex, projected to cost $2.7 million, will be located in the northwest corner of the Stone Creek development.

Each apartment will be on ground level and will include two bedrooms and a single-car garage. The units, which will have 850 square feet of living space, will have a front porch and rear patio. In addition, residents will have individual storm shelters. Rousey said this will consist of an extra room at the back of each garage. The room will be encased in reinforced concrete and strapped down.

Rousey said since The Mirror ran a story about the development in May, his office has received about a half-dozen phone calls from people interested in renting the apartments.

But because of federal regulations regarding low-income housing, applicants can't apply sooner than 60 days before they move in.

"So it really doesn't do much good at this point to make an application," Rousey said.

He noted though, that his office is taking names of people who call.

"This spring, as we start to build, we'll have some informational meetings in the area," Rousey said. "That would be a good time for people to leave us their name and number."

The firm recently completed a similar project in Sedgwick, near Wichita. And, Rousey said, Cohen-Esrey has been approved to build a 24-unit low-income elderly residential development in Cheney in 2004.

The apartments are part of a federal program that is administered by the state.

"It's a very complicated process," Rousey said. "... Actually, we've been looking at the Tonganoxie project for a little over two years now. That's not abnormal in our business. ... We're excited to get going on it."

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