By Kevin Collison
Sam Rodgers Place, a 62-unit mixed-income housing development, broke ground Monday on the campus of the Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center near downtown.
The development is intended to provide housing to households across the spectrum, from families coming from public housing to market-rate renters. It will include apartments with up to five-bedrooms as well as townhomes.
The development also will be adjacent to the Samuel Rodgers health care facility which will provide services for residents.
“If you live in a junky house, your health is likely to be junky,” U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II, told the audience at the ceremonial groundbreaking. “I’m telling you we still have a problem here.
“The State of Missouri is about 130,000 units short of affordable housing that is desperately needed…This is a step into the future of creating housing and it sends a clear message, housing-health, health-housing.”
The project is being built by Chicago-based Brinshore Development and Affordable Housing of Kansas City, Inc. along with the Rodgers Health Center and will occupy a five-acre site northeast of Ninth and Euclid.
It’s the final phase of the Paseo Gateway redevelopment initiative that’s added more than 300 residences to the area, many of them affordable.
“We are extremely excited about the construction of another choice for affordable housing in Kansas City,” said Edwin Lowndes, executive director of the KC Housing Authority, said in a statement.
“This is a unique opportunity combining housing and health to serve the needs of the families in our community.”
The Brinshore Paseo Gateway developments began in 2017 with the help of a $30 million federal grant from the Choice Neighborhoods Implementation program. It also has received property tax abatements from city development agencies.
It’s helped build mixed-income apartment projects to the Pendleton Heights, Paseo West and Independence Plaza neighborhoods.
“Brinshore is excited to commence construction on the final phase of the Paseo Gateway effort and to deliver high quality, energy efficient mixed-income housing to Kansas City’s
Independence Plaza neighborhood,” Brinshore founding principal, David Brint, said in a statement.
Bob Theis, CEO of the Rodgers Health Center, said the mixed-income project fits with the vision of the institution founder.
“Dr. Rodgers said ‘bring healthcare to the people where they are,'” Theis said. “He believed that housing and healthcare were wedded together, which is why he established the Health Center in the Wayne Miner housing project in 1968.”
Rodgers daughters, Dr. Rita Rodgers-Stanley and Rosalyn Rodgers Moore, were among those in attendance.
The new development replaces the former Choteau Courts public housing project. As part of the project, 27 units will have a preference at lease-up for former residents of the Chouteau Courts public housing development.
Twenty-seven of the units offer opportunities for low-income households with rents no larger than 30 percent of their income.
There will be 20 market-rate units with monthly rents ranging from $700 for a one-bedroom to less than $1,000 for a three-bedroom. The remaining affordable units will included one-bedroom units renting in the mid-$500s.
The $16 million Sam Rodgers Place development will include a 4,300 square-foot community center called the Propeller that will include event space and other neighborhood health and well-being services.
The development is expected to be completed by spring 2023.
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