Thursday, May 23, 2024


Cambridge’s Putnam Garden Apartments was more than just the backdrop for today’s announcement by Gov. Deval Patrick of more than $73 million in affordable-housing resources and tax credits for projects in 17 communities across the state — it was also a beneficiary.

The Harvard Square preservation project, sponsored by the Homeowners Rehab nonprofit, is to get $2.8 million in federal tax credits and housing subsidies and create 34 jobs, ultimately featuring services and 94 renovated units for seniors, including very frail seniors, and 19 units occupied by low-income seniors, the Governor’s Office announced.

“Creating or preserving affordable housing helps to generate jobs, grow local businesses and strengthen our communities” Patrick said. “Government’s role is to help people help themselves, and sustainable affordable housing will create growth and opportunity in our communities that will last for generations to come.”

Also benefiting: The Bishop Allen Apartments in Central Square, sponsored by the Just-A-Start nonprofit  and also getting low-income housing tax credits and state bond funds and, like the Putnam Garden Apartments, substantial funds from city government. When completed, Bishop Allen will feature 32 rehabilitated units for families.

The bill Patrick signed into law at the Thursday event, “An Act Financing the Production and Preservation of Housing for the Low and Moderate Income Residents,” provides $1.4 billion parceled out over five years for capital funding programs that rehabilitate and modernize such housing in 24 projects across Massachusetts – creating 1,145 units of housing and an estimated 1,935 construction jobs.

“This investment in Cambridge’s affordable-housing stock represents just one part of the Patrick administration’s good work towards ensuring that all citizens of the Commonwealth can afford to live here,” state Rep. Dave Rogers said. “Helping Cambridge maintain these units keeps people in their homes while maintaining the economic and generational diversity that make Cambridge such a vibrant place to live.”

State Rep. Jay Livingstone, also at the ceremony, said he was “pleased by the investment that the Patrick administration is making in affordable housing here in Cambridge and across the commonwealth. I look forward to finding more ways to increase our affordable housing stock to start addressing the overwhelming needs that our citizens have for affordable housing.”

The $73.6 million investments Patrick announced include more than $14.8 million in federal low-income housing tax credits, $7.8 million in state low-income housing tax credits and $5.1 million in state and federal housing program subsidies.

Of the 1,145 units preserved or created, 1,084 will be affordable to low- and moderate-income individuals and households, with 228 units reserved for extremely low-income families, including those making the transition from homelessness.

“The Patrick administration has taken a comprehensive approach to housing in the commonwealth that prioritizes permanent solutions that lead to stable, appropriate housing,” said Aaron Gornstein, undersecretary for the Department of Housing and Community Development and chairman of the Interagency Council on Housing and Homelessness. “By committing to expanding and improving affordable housing stock in Massachusetts, we are reducing homelessness and creating new opportunities for families.”

The Thursday announcement is a callback to a year earlier, when Patrick announced a goal for the state to create 10,000 multi-family units of housing per year.

“The Patrick administration has taken a comprehensive approach to invest in the growth and expansion of our affordable housing stock for families across the commonwealth,” state Sen. Jamie Eldridge said. “Projects such as the Putnam Square Apartments take strong steps to help reduce homelessness, create new job opportunities and strengthen our communities.”

This post was written from a press release.