Staff Report

MIAMI – As founder of the Overtown Youth Center, NBA Hall of Famer Alonzo Mourning is helping to build children’s educational fortitude. In his role as a housing developer, the Miami Heat legend is helping provide families an affordable place to live.

Housing Trust Group (HTG), a Miami based real estate developer specializing in affordable housing, and AM Affordable Housing, a nonprofit founded by Mourning, celebrated the grand opening of Courtside Apartments, an 84-unit residential community in the historic Overtown neighborhood of Miami, on Fri- day, Sept. 23. Public officials, community members, and guests gathered at the new $22.8 million development at 1699 N.W. 4th Avenue for an official ribbon-cutting ceremony and reception.

Courtside’s one, two and three bedroom apartments are reserved for residents making an annual income of no more than 60 percent of area median income (AMI). Monthly rents range from $760 to $990 and the property is already 100 percent leased.

“Courtside Apartments is the result of a successful public-private partnership. We are committed to easing the burden on Miami’s working families, and to bringing high-quality affordable housing to down- town Miami,” said Matthew Rieger, President and CEO of developer HTG. “Courtside is a place residents can call home and take great pride in, and provides a solid foundation for the ongoing revitalization of the historic Overtown neighborhood.”

Courtside’s development started in 2008, when AM Affordable Housing, Mourning’s nonprofit, signed a 65-year ground lease for four acres at the County-owned Cul- mer Center property. After a competitive bidding process, a report indicates AM selected Housing Trust Group as the developer-partner because of the developer’s successful track record in South Florida, expertise in the affordable housing arena, and strong relationships in the community.

According to a report, HTG secured financing in 2014 through a variety of public-private sources including $9 million in Florida Housing Finance Corporation low- income housing tax credits (four percent); $3.31 million in construction debt from

City Community Capital; $7.5 million from the Southeast Overtown/Park West Community Redevelopment Agency; $1.75 mil- lion from Miami-Dade County in the form of a surtax loan along with developer equity. It broke ground in 2015, with 40 percent of the construction labor provided by residents of the surrounding neighbor- hood

Courtside includes ten one-bedroom, one-bathroom units; 53 two-bedroom, two bathroom units; 21 three-bedroom, two- bathroom units; and four live-work units. Amenities include a basketball court, fitness center, business center with computers, laundry facilities, picnic area with outdoor grill, media center, and carded entry system. There is resident parking for 86 cars, and an auto care/cleaning station on the property. Courtside is located in the Southeast Overtown Park West (SEOPW) CRA, directly across from a park, a school and a church, and adjacent to the Culmer Center.

Courtside Apartments is the first of a proposed three-phase development; phase two calls for approximately 120 apartments for seniors as soon as financing is finalized.

The project team for Courtside Apartments includes general contractor CB- HTG, LLC; architect Cohen, Freedman, Encinosa and Associates; structural engineer M.A.S. and Associates; mechanical/electrical engineer RPJ, Inc.; civil engineer HSQ Group, Inc.; and landscape architects Rosenberg Gardner Design.