More than 50 people gathered at the corner of Garden and Washington streets to celebrate an open house for ReVere Homes, Logansport’s newest multi-family tax credit properties.

Last November, the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority (IHCDA) recommended that tax credits be awarded to Indianapolis-based Crestline Development Co. to help fund a project that will add 30 new homes — 15 affordable three-bedroom homes and 15 affordable four-bedroom homes — on scattered sites throughout the community.

Jim Erickson, vice president of Crestline Development, said that he is proud of the project and hopes to leave a positive impact on the city.

“We’re hopeful that this project is a great benefit to the people of Logansport,” said Erickson. “To be able to either fill empty lots or replace homes that were condemned, and then to put up something brand new and well-built, in a design for long-term living, is nothing but a very positive thing.”

The new homes are being built on city-owned lots acquired through the Blight Elimination Program (BEP) — a statewide program that allows Indiana municipalities and communities to demolish blighted properties and offer a variety of end uses for the newly cleared properties, including green space and redevelopment.

According to city officials, 19 of the 30 city-owned lots were formerly occupied by dilapidated houses that were demolished through the city’s participation in BEP.

Erickson said that three ReVere Homes are currently completed and that the company has plans to roll out 5-10 homes a month for the next four months.

“I think by the end of the year we should have all 30 done,” he said.

Each new home will be equipped with a great room with an open kitchen/dining area/living area and breakfast bar. They will have energy-efficient heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems and windows along with living room ceiling fans, dishwashers, wall-to-wall carpeting, security alarms and washer and dryer hookups designed into each unit. Homes will also have front and back yards and detached single-car garages.

The properties will be targeted toward mixed-income families with incomes ranging from $16,286 to $48,360. Six of the units will be designed to be handicap accessible.

“We call it ‘workforce housing’,” said Erickson. “There is a maximum income amount that someone would be allowed to make in order to qualify to live in the home.”

After a 15-year tax credit compliance period concludes, renters will have the opportunity to buy their homes at the cost of outstanding debt and taxes.

Deputy Mayor Mercedes Brugh said this project is a great start in addressing the housing needs of the city. She credited members of the Logansport Municipal Building Corporation, clerk-treasurer Stacy Cox and her staff, City Council members, city attorney Yamir Gonzalez-Velez, building commissioner Deb Beattie, planning executive director Arin Shaver, CLEDO President Bill Cuppy, PNC Bank and the firms who made the project possible.

Logansport Mayor Dave Kitchell said the project fulfills only part of the city’s housing needs.

“This project does a lot on several fronts — it helps raise the assessed value of the city, but it also helps the property values of those in this area,” the mayor said. “We are building more homes right now than at any time in the last 50 years.”

Last year, a housing master plan funded by the city council determined the city has a need for a minimum of 250 new housing units up to as many as 400 in the coming years. That figure does not include an estimated 40 new market rate apartments under construction at Logan Square downtown.

Earlier in the year, representatives of the city’s housing steering committee agreed to move forward with plans to work with a Fort Wayne developer, Biggs, to add single-family housing to the city-owned properties near the intersection of High Street and Yorktown Road.

The housing study identified the Yorktown and High properties owned by the city, the former Tipton Elementary School site and downtown Logansport as the first targets for expanded housing in the community.

Discussions also are ongoing regarding potential housing associated with the redevelopment of the nearby Logansport Mall property.

ReVere Homes marks Crestline Development’s second state-incentivized project in Logansport after receiving tax credits in 2013 to help fund McKinley School Apartments on the city’s north side. The firm’s latest $7.2 million venture is named after ReVere Motor Car Corp., which manufactured automobiles in downtown Logansport during the early 1990s.

Reach Quentin Blount at quentin.blount@pharostribune.com or 574-732-5130. Twitter: @quentinblount

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