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The Journal Gazette

Tuesday, March 13, 2018 7:49 am

Verbatim: River's Edge homeless haven reaps state funds

The Fort Wayne Housing Authority issued the following news release today:

Fort Wayne – The Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority has awarded the Fort Wayne Housing Authority and UP Development $12 million in Rental Housing Tax Credits (RHTCs), $500k from the Development Fund and $400,000 from the Development Fund. The funds will be utilized to support the construction of River's Edge, Permanent Supportive Housing for homeless and at-risk individuals and families with disabilities.

River's Edge will be located on Spy Run Avenue and is conveniently located near several grocery stores, parks, retail establishments and the Indiana University Purdue University Campus. Two bus lines connect the site directly to the downtown providing residents with a convenient and accessible transportation option. On-site amenities including a large community room with a TV and small library, a fitness room, a computer room, bike racks, laundry facilities, and convenient walk paths to nearby retail centers will also be available to all residents. All units will include modern appliances, wooden cabinetry in bathrooms and kitchens and additional finishing touches such as closet organizers . All ground floor units will be accessible/adaptable, and an elevator will guarantee access to the building's second floor.

“Over the past two years FWHA and UP Development have engaged residents and partners about the need for a supportive housing development within our community,” said George Guy, FWHA executive director. “Our partnership with the CSH Institute has helped us build relationships with key stakeholders and create a project that will change the affordable housing landscape throughout our community for decades to come. The Fort Wayne Housing Authority is committed to providing safe, affordable and quality housing and the necessary wraparound services to anyone in need. River's Edge does just that and we look forward to serving those who will call this new development home,” he added.

In making the announcement, Lori Phillips, Indiana CSH Housing Director stated “What excites CSH most about the River's Edge initiative in Fort Wayne is how they are so very focused on the supportive housing and healthcare connections and partnerships they are building.” “The River's Edge team successfully completed the Indiana Supportive Housing Institute, cosponsored by CSH and the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority (IHCDA), which set in motion their tax credit award. What caught our attention immediately is how the team is leveraging the ways supportive housing improves health outcomes for tenants and lowers healthcare costs.”

Park Center will serve as the Tenant Investment Coordinator as well as primary service provider. In partnership with local health and social service providers, Park Center will offer on- and off-site services to all residents including health assessments and referrals, individual counseling and case management, support groups, behavioral health and addictions treatment, life and job skills training, and community support programs, including homeless outreach and clinical services. Individualized service plans will be prepared between residents, case managers, and property management to tailor the variety of services offered by the project to the individual needs of each resident.

Jessica Berzac, President of UP Development, expressed her excitement of the collaboration between a well-rounded team "Our firm has consistently been impressed with Indiana's commitment to housing for the homeless, those with disabilities and other vulnerable individuals in the community. We approached Fort Wayne based on the strength of the local service opportunities with Park Center and a deep commitment to community based housing solutions within the Housing Authority. River's Edge will be an incredible development in our portfolio and I've been proud to work along such passionate partners."


The Fort Wayne Housing Authority (FWHA) is the recipient of a $128,000 award from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The funds represent a $75 million dollar commitment from HUD in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Family Self-Sufficiency Program (FSS). The funds provide resources for housing authorities to create programs to assist residents with their pursuit of education and employment opportunities that will place them on a pathway to self-sufficiency.

In receiving this award FWHA CEO and Executive Director, George Guy stated, “We are thrilled to receive this funding as it will allow us to continue to support our residents and families in meaningful ways. Ensuring our residents achieve greater levels of self-sufficiency is a fundamental part of the work we do. For each resident that is able to become self-sufficient, we are able to increase our capacity to serve others. These funds will help us achieve this goal.”