Photo provided
Adams Elementary School in Sheridan.
Photo provided Adams Elementary School in Sheridan.

SHERIDAN – The Woda Group, Inc. and Housing Services Alliance, Inc. (HSA) will redevelop the historic Adams Elementary School in Sheridan, transforming the vacant property into 32 affordable apartments and renovating its gym to become community recreation space. Construction of Blackhawk Commons could begin as soon as July 2018.

Plans for the $7.2 million development had been on hold since February, when the Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority placed Blackhawk Commons on a waiting list for federal Rental Housing Tax Credits. IHCDA awarded the sought-after tax credits to 16 projects at the time, holding back a portion of available credits due to uncertainty in the equity market.

IHCDA later notified Woda Group and HSA that $610,000 in tax credits were available for the development. Although that was less than the $770,000 in credits originally requested, the development team was able to move forward.

The one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments at Blackhawk Commons will be leased to residents earning 60 percent or less of the area median income, or $33,600 annually for a two-person household.

Rental Housing Tax Credits are awarded to developers as a way to incentivize private investment in affordable housing. Investors buy the credits, generating revenue to fund projects while reducing their tax liability. Additional funding for Blackhawk Commons is coming from the IHCDA’s Development Fund, and Hamilton County government agreed to contribute $300,000 toward the gym renovations.

Hamilton County Area Neighborhood Development Inc. is consulting with Ohio-based Woda and Pennsylvania-based HSA on Blackhawk Commons. HAND’s proposed Noblesville Granary & Lofts development also was on the 2017 tax-credit waiting list, but the available credits were not sufficient to proceed with that project.

Founded in 2003, HAND’s mission is invest in neighborhoods, provide housing solutions and develop partnership to improve lives and build community. The not-for-profit organization owns six apartment communities that offer a total of 96 affordable units; 10 additional units are under construction near Carmel.

The Woda Group, Inc., and its affiliates are experienced developers, general contractors, and property managers specializing in the design, construction, and management of affordable multi-family apartments, senior communities, and single-family homes.  Considered leading experts in the affordable housing industry, the Woda team is known for producing and maintaining high-quality affordable housing.  Affordable Housing Finance Magazine has ranked The Woda Group, Inc. 9th overall among Affordable Housing Developers and 22nd overall among Affordable Housing Owners in their April/May 2017 issue. The Woda Group, Inc. has developed and currently manages over 300 communities and over 12,000 units.  Headquartered in Westerville, OH, the firm has offices at six additional locations including Indianapolis.  For more information, visit www.wodagroup.com.

Housing Services Alliance, Inc. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the production of affordable housing. HSA has completed more than 80 affordable housing developments and frequently partners with Woda, most recently on a 38-unit senior development in Kendallville called Atz Place, which opened in the fall of 2017.