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Baltimore Housing Celebrates the Grand Opening of the Mary Harvin Senior Center

Baltimore Housing Commissioner Paul T. Graziano joined the Woda Group and city, state, community leaders to celebrate the grand opening of the Mary Harvin Senior Center in Broadway East on April 27, 2016.

A $15 million development project, The Mary Harvin Senior Center has replaced a blighted block with 61 units of the highest quality affordable senior housing, along with counseling and job training space. Located across from Southern Baptist Church in the 1700 block of N. Chester Street in East Baltimore, the Mary Harvin Center was approximately 45% complete when it was tragically destroyed by fire on the evening of April 27, 2015.

Within hours of the fire, the Woda Group and its partners expressed their firm resolve to complete the project immediately. With strong support from Baltimore Housing, the State Department of Housing and Community Development, and the project’s financial partners, Hudson Housing Capital and Capital One Bank, Woda moved with determination to reconstruct the project.

The project is made possible by low-income housing tax credits from the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development and loans and equity investment from Capital One Bank and Hudson Housing Capital. City of Baltimore and its Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) provided $865,000 in City of Baltimore Bond Fund Loans to support a portion of the hard construction costs of the project.

The assemblage of the Mary Harvin site took place over quite a few years. While the bulk of the site was property owned by Southern Baptist Church, Baltimore Housing's Land Resources Division did some tax-sale foreclosure work on several properties in the footprint, as well as a condemnation of one of the central properties. The combination of these properties with those already owned by the church formed the basis for site control for the eventual project award of Low Income Housing Tax Credits financing with CDA.

In October of 2014, the Woda Group, Inc. and Southern Baptist Church broke ground for the Mary Harvin Center, named in honor of a founding member of Southern Baptist Church. After restarting construction, the Mary Harvin Senior Center was completed 69 days ahead of the scheduled completion date.

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