Annapolis, Maryland – August 30, 2023 – The Housing Authority of the City of Annapolis announced one of the largest financial infusions in the city’s recent history with the financial closing for the rehabilitation of a major Annapolis landmark. The Morris H. Blum Apartments, a historic 154-unit senior housing building, is set to undergo an extensive rehabilitation project aimed at revitalizing and enhancing the living experience for its residents. Securing the necessary funding to make this project a reality, the $60 million financing was finalized on August 16, 2023.
Melissa Maddox-Evans, Executive Director of the Housing Authority of the City of Annapolis (HACA), expressed her enthusiasm for this transformative project, stating, “The Morris H. Blum Apartments hold a special place in our community’s history. This rehabilitation project is a testament to HACA’s commitment to providing safe, comfortable, and modern living environment to our senior residents. Through strategic partnerships with great partners and stakeholders, we are embarking on a journey that will not only revitalize the physical infrastructure but also uplift the lives of those who call Morris H. Blum Apartments their home.”
Located at 701 Glenwood Street in Annapolis, Maryland, the 2.42-acre site will soon see a remarkable transformation that promises to elevate senior living standards. The funding structure encompasses a diverse array of sources, including approximately $36 million from the Maryland Community Development Administration (CDA), $21 million in low-income housing tax credit equity from U.S. Bancorp, $1.2 million from Arundel Community Development Services, Inc., $105,000 from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) through the City of Annapolis, as well as contributions from the seller, FHA, and private sources.
Andre Atkins, Chairman of the Housing Authority of the City of Annapolis, shared his perspective on the project, remarking, “This rehabilitation effort reflects our unwavering dedication to fostering a thriving community where our senior residents can age gracefully and with dignity. The Morris H. Blum Apartments have a storied past, and as we work hand in hand with partners, we are shaping an even brighter future. Through innovative financing, meticulous planning, and a focus on the wellbeing of our residents, this project exemplifies our commitment to their needs and aspirations.”
Originally constructed in 1976 and formerly known as the Glenwood Apartments, this iconic building was previously owned and operated by HACA as a traditional public housing high-rise community. With the opportunity to breathe new life into this community, HACA seized the chance to rehabilitate the property under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Section 18 Demo Disposition/RAD program.
Under this new visionary initiative, HACA selected The Community Builders, Inc. (TCB), a national non-profit affordable housing organization that develops, owns and operates affordable and mixed-income housing, to spearhead the revitalization efforts. The collaboration gave rise to the creation of a dedicated entity known as Morris Blum Senior LLC, which will oversee the ownership, rehabilitation, and operation of the building. HACA entered into a 75-year ground lease agreement, paving the way for this ambitious endeavor.
“The Community Builders is thrilled to be part of the preservation of Morris H. Blum Apartments, preserving a critical housing resource for Annapolis’ seniors with the Housing Authority of the City of Annapolis,” said Jacqueline West-Spencer, TCB Mid-Atlantic regional vice president of development. “The preservation will breathe new life into this iconic structure while allowing older adults to age independently in housing that is affordable and accessible. We look forward to delivering a project that exceeds expectations and creates a stronger Annapolis community.”
The rehabilitation is scheduled to be completed by Summer 2025. Leading the construction effort is Harkins Builders, a trusted name in the industry with a track record of delivering exceptional results. During the rehabilitation process, some existing residents will be temporarily relocated off-site to ensure their safety and comfort, while others will be transferred to vacant units within the building itself.
The comprehensive rehabilitation project encompasses a wide range of enhancements, including the installation of new windows, upgraded cabinets, modern countertops, improved toilets, state-of-the-art kitchen appliances, an updated roof, refreshed landscaping, modernized elevators, energy-efficient LED lighting, gas water heaters, and a new multi-purpose room that will cater to the diverse needs of the community.
HUD’s Section 18 Demo Disposition/RAD Program has recently emerged as a vital initiative designed to revitalize communities and provide a more sustainable housing model. By leveraging public and private resources, the program facilitates the transformation of existing properties, promoting improved living conditions and fostering sustainable communities. This program empowers housing authorities to redevelop properties in ways that better serve the needs of their residents while ensuring long-term affordability and stability.
About the Housing Authority of the City of Annapolis: Established to serve the housing needs of Annapolis residents, the Housing Authority of the City of Annapolis (HACA) has a rich history spanning decades. Since its inception, HACA has been dedicated to providing safe, affordable, and well-maintained housing options for the city’s diverse population. With a mission rooted in community service, HACA has consistently demonstrated a commitment to innovation and collaboration, ensuring that residents have access to quality housing that enhances their quality of life.