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MassDevelopment Issues Bonds to Help Beacon Communities Preserve Framingham and Springfield Affordable Housing

November 13, 2013

Kelsey Abbruzzese, MassDevelopment, 617-330-2086 & 617-448-9077 (cell)
Pamela Goodman, Beacon Communities, 617-574-1142

MassDevelopment has issued over $70.8 million in tax-exempt bonds on behalf of real estate developer Beacon Communities LLC for two projects that will preserve 621 units of affordable housing in Massachusetts. Beacon Communities is using the tax-exempt bond proceeds to acquire and renovate Edmands House in Framingham and Colonial Estates in Springfield.

Beacon Communities purchased the Edmands House property through the state’s affordable housing preservation law and will keep 171 units affordable at the 190-unit, mixed-income apartment community. Of these, 132 units will remain affordable for 45 years. As part of the transaction, Beacon Communities renewed the rental assistance contract serving 112 units for an additional 20 years. Beacon obtained a commitment of rental assistance for an additional 59 units for a term of 15 years.

Beacon was involved in development of the 500-unit Colonial Estates in 1971. This transaction will preserve 450 units as affordable for 45 years. Here as well, Beacon renewed the rental assistance contract for the property, serving 349 units. This contract will remain in place for an additional 23+ years. The property has 430 two-bedroom units and 70 three-bedroom townhouse units. Citi Community Capital purchased the bonds related to this project directly.

“Preserving the Commonwealth’s affordable housing stock contributes to economic development in Massachusetts by opening doors for working individuals and families,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Marty Jones. “We’re pleased to partner with Beacon Communities once again to keep these units affordable in Framingham and Springfield.”

Renovations at Edmands House and Colonial Estates include improvements to kitchens, bathrooms, building envelopes, lighting and common amenities; new high-efficiency heating and hot water systems; security and accessibility improvements. MassDevelopment also worked with Beacon Communities in 2008, when the agency issued a $14.1 million tax-exempt bond on behalf of the Wilber School Apartments project in Sharon, transforming the former Charles R. Wilber School into a 75-unit, mixed-income apartment complex.

“MassDevelopment’s role in the preservation of these important affordable community resources was critical,” said Pamela Goodman, President of Beacon Communities LLC. “These deals are very complex, but MassDevelopment was an agile partner, able to provide the necessary financing within the necessary timeframes.”

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2013, MassDevelopment financed or managed 350 projects generating investment of more than $2.4 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are projected to create more than 7,000 jobs and build or rehabilitate 800 residential units.