/Hometown for All drives progress in expanding affordable housing

Hometown for All drives progress in expanding affordable housing

Hometown for All, the city’s affordable and workforce housing initiative, continues to be the driver for expanded housing options in Tempe.

The latest activity includes: the sale of city land that puts $2.6 million toward affordable housing; the purchase of a small lot for homeownership opportunities; and a developer’s pledge to donate funds that will increase affordable housing. This activity is on top of a $1.2 million investment going toward remediating five city-owned parcels with plans for developing affordable and workforce housing.

“I’m excited about the progress that we’ve been able to make since introducing Hometown for All in January of this year,” said Tempe Mayor Corey Woods. “We know that this initiative isn’t about one particular project or one particular donation. It’s about a combination of efforts that build on each other, and occur over time, that allow the city to increase the availability of affordable and workforce housing instead of relying on the market.”

Hometown for All provides a dedicated funding stream to accelerate the growth of affordable and workforce housing options in the city and reflects the desire by Woods and the full City Council to ensure that Tempe has a variety of housing types.

For every development project built in Tempe, an amount equivalent to 50% of certain permitting fees paid to the city goes to support the Tempe Coalition for Affordable Housing, a nonprofit corporation affiliated with the City of Tempe Public Housing Authority. This coalition is informally called The Affiliate.

From there, the funds are used to buy and rehabilitate properties, buy land and request competitive offers from developers or nonprofit partners to build affordable or workforce units, and develop city-owned land.

Through the Hometown for All initiative, the city also updated its guidance for voluntary contributions from developers and others to fund affordable housing through The Affiliate. Suggested donation amounts are based on the expected amount of certain developer-paid permitting fees – 20% for residential and 10% for commercial/office projects.

Three recent activities will expand affordable and workforce housing options in Tempe:

  • In mid-May, The Affiliate purchased a small vacant lot at 1119 S. Holbrook Lane for $145,000 to be used for permanently affordable homeownership opportunities, such as construction of two townhomes or one single-family home. The Affiliate will be seeking a developer and development plan in the coming months.
  • The city is selling 3.5 acres at 945 W. Rio Salado Parkway for a mixed-use housing project by Hardy Rio Development Company. The sale price of $2.6 million will be used by The Affiliate to increase workforce housing. The City Council held the first public hearing on the sale at its May 27 meeting; a second and final hearing will be held June 10.
  • The developer of the Rio East project at 98 S. River Drive announced a pledge at the May 27 Council meeting to make a voluntary contribution equivalent to 40% of certain developer-paid permitting fees to support affordable housing efforts.

Learn more about Hometown for All at tempe.gov/HometownforAll