Senior housing development plan moves forward

Senior housing in downtown Warren moved a step closer to becoming a reality Wednesday.

At the regular meeting of the city’s Redevelopment Authority, City Manager Nancy Freenock addressed the group regarding the property located at 231 to 237 Pennsylvania Ave. W., which is currently owned by the city.

An agreement of sale has been reached, according to Freenock, between the city and Senior Housing Associates – a subsidiary of the Hudson Group, which requested and was granted a special exception from the city’s Zoning and Hearing Board in June to reclassify the property from commercial to residential.

The proposed project includes 38 to 40 senior housing units.

Included will be space for an art gallery and studio space for artistic endeavors and education. Bicycles, kayaks and the space to store them are also part of the plan to help seniors 55 and over who live in the low-income tax credit housing project take advantage of downtown’s natural and commercial spaces.

The agreement of sale, drafted by the RDA’s attorney Andrea Stapleford along with Freenock and the Hudson Group, includes a 16-foot easement to the back of the property. There will also be leased spaces in the parking garage on Clark Street for future tenants of the housing units.

“What actually transferred was from the middle of Pennsylvania Avenue to just about the garage,” said Freenock, adding that “if for some reason in the future that alley isn’t needed anymore the easement can be extinguished.”

The Hudson Group, said Freenock, “is looking at a closing date of around September or October,” with applications for the tax credits being due around Nov. 16 of this year. Board members asked to have copies of the agreement sent to them to look over, although they did not anticipate needing to comment on or address any issues within it before approving it at a future meeting.