$9.9 Million MassDevelopment Bond Helps Finance Dorchester Affordable Housing

July 10, 2013

Kelsey Abbruzzese, MassDevelopment, 617-330-2086 & 617-448-9077 (cell)
Dan Cruz, Cruz Development Corporation, 617-445-6901

MassDevelopment has issued a $9.9 million tax-exempt bond on behalf of WFH Housing LLC, which will use bond proceeds to buy and renovate Wayne at Franklin Hill – three buildings with 72 units of affordable housing – in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood. The project is part of the overall redevelopment of Wayne Apartments, a group of sites serving 349 low-income households in Dorchester, Mattapan, and Roxbury. All 72 units at Wayne at Franklin Hill are affordable to households earning no more than 60 percent of area median income. Cruz Development is the project's sponsor, and Eastern Bank purchased the bond.

“Preserving and maintaining affordable housing is critical to the Commonwealth’s economic development, opening doors for working individuals and families,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Marty Jones. “We’re pleased to leverage this low-cost financing to benefit Bostonians.”

“The Wayne at Franklin Hill affordable housing project preserves much-needed high quality family housing to Dorchester,” said Thomas Beard, Vice President, Community Development Lending, Eastern Bank. “Eastern Bank is proud to partner with MassDevelopment and Cruz Development on an effort that will improve the quality of life for many families living and working in Dorchester.”

Renovations at Wayne at Franklin Hill include new kitchens, bathrooms, heating systems, roofs, windows, and flooring; masonry work; painting; and sprinkler-system installation. In addition to the tax-exempt bond financing, MassDevelopment assisted the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) with the approval of federal low-income housing tax credits, which will generate about $5.8 million in equity.

“With the help of MassDevelopment’s tax-exempt bond program, we were able to take an at-risk property and preserve it as affordable housing for 72 deserving families,” said Cruz Development’s Dan Cruz. “We will also, in an area where unemployment is double the state average, employ approximately 70 percent of the construction workers and 70 percent of the subcontractors from the inner city. It was a pleasure to work with the knowledgeable folks at MassDevelopment.”

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2012, MassDevelopment financed or managed 280 projects generating investment of more than $2.3 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are projected to create more than 12,000 jobs and build or rehabilitate 900 residential units.