Housing for Veterans, Formerly Homeless Residents Included in Edison Development
TRENTON – A groundbreaking on Wednesday kicked off Truman Square, the first of a two-phase community of 172 affordable apartments for families, which is funded in part by the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA) and will also provide homes for veterans and formerly homeless residents at the former Camp Kilmer site in Edison.
Phase I of Truman Square, an $18.9 million development by Pennrose, involves the construction of a four-story building to include 86 one- to three-bedroom flat and townhouse-style apartments for residents earning between 20 percent and 60 percent of the area median income. Twenty-two apartments will be set aside for formerly homeless residents. An additional 25 percent of the apartments will provide homes for veterans and may overlap with homeless residents. The complex will also include laundry facilities, a fitness center and covered common patio area.
“Truman Square is a community affordable for working families that is close to jobs, education and transportation,” said NJHMFA Executive Director Charles A. Richman. “It is also fitting that a site once used to house soldiers will also now provide affordable homes for our veterans.”
NJHMFA awarded Pennrose very competitive 9 percent Low Income Housing Tax Credits, which are expected to generate $13.6 million in private equity. The development also received $1.21 million in Middlesex County Housing First Capital Funds, $1.28 million from the Federal Home Loan Bank, and $400,000 in Middlesex County HOME Funds.
Twenty-two apartments for the lowest income residents will be supported through the state’s Division of Developmental Disabilities and the Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services.
A planned second phase would create an additional 86 apartments, and Pennrose hopes to begin construction later this year.
Rents for the first phase will range from $555 to $1,163 for one-bedroom apartments; from $669 to $1,398 for two-bedroom apartments and from $768 to $1,610 for three-bedroom apartments.
There are approximately 413,000 veterans in New Jersey, according to the New Jersey Veterans Service Office. Middlesex County has 620 homeless persons, including adults and children representing 430 households, as of the January 2019 Point-in-Time count.
Camp Kilmer is a former U.S. Army staging area that was responsible for the movement of troops and supplies to Europe during World War II and has since been designated a redevelopment area. An existing vacant building on the Truman Square site was demolished.
Truman Square is close to shopping, recreation, amenities and public transportation, including a Rutgers bus stop, making it accessible to jobs and education.
Direct skill training and services to all tenants, as well as support groups including veteran-to-veteran services, will be provided by Triple C Housing, a 501c3 community housing development organization focused on expanding affordable housing opportunities complimented by supportive services. Intensive case management and programs will also be provided for formerly homeless individuals and families.
Construction is expected to be complete in July 2020, with rental information available at www.TrumanSquare.com.
Pennrose, based in Philadelphia, has been working since 1971 to improve the lives of working families by creating safe, secure housing communities.
For more information on NJHMFA and its programs, visit njhousing.gov.