Mayor Donna Deegan speaks at a groundbreaking Monday, May 13, 2024, for the Village at Cedar Hills. At left is Shannon Nazworth, president and CEO of Ability Housing. | Ability HousingMayor Donna Deegan speaks at a groundbreaking Monday, May 13, 2024, for the Village at Cedar Hills. At left is Shannon Nazworth, president and CEO of Ability Housing. | Ability Housing
Mayor Donna Deegan speaks at a groundbreaking Monday, May 13, 2024, for the Village at Cedar Hills. At left is Shannon Nazworth, president and CEO of Ability Housing. | Ability Housing

Affordable housing in the works on Westside

Published on May 14, 2024 at 12:31 pm

Ninety new affordable housing apartments will be coming soon to Jacksonville.

Ability Housing broke ground Monday on the Village at Cedar Hills, an apartment community on 7.35 acres at Harlow Boulevard and 103rd Street, just east of Interstate 295.

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Seventy-two of the units will be set aside for households earning up to 60% of the area median income, or $58,380 for a four-person household. The remaining units will be available to households earning up to 30% of the area median income, or $29,190.

Construction is expected to take 18 months. During the first three years, 18 of the units will be used for crisis services and acute care — an attempt to blend health care with housing solutions.  

“Today’s groundbreaking means that next year, 90 families will have the dignity of a quality home they can afford,” Shannon Nazworth, president and CEO of Ability Housing, said in a news release.

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Jacksonville Mayor Donna Deegan said: “The Village at Cedar Hills is not just an opportunity for our citizens in need of affordable housing. It is also an opportunity for all of us to recognize that a vibrant and healthy community is one that provides working families and individuals viable housing options that support financial stability,”

Ability Housing is a not-for-profit developer of affordable housing. The organization opened in 1992 as a group home for six adults, according to its website. In 2006, at the request of the Northeast Florida Homeless Coalition, Ability Housing began developing multifamily rental housing, serving low-income households, adults with disabilities and those exiting homelessness.

The Village at Cedar Hills will consist of three buildings comprising 36 one-bedroom apartments, 45 two-bedroom apartments and nine three bedroom apartments. The complex will include a community center, a computer lab, a library, meeting and workshop space, outdoor recreation such as a playground and a walking trail.

An illustration shows the Village at Cedar Hills. | Ability Housing

The nearly $31 million project will be financed through state and federal sources. The city of Jacksonville is providing a $1 million grant through the Emergency Rental Assistance Program.

The Corporation for Supportive Housing provided a predevelopment loan in the amount of  $1.45 million. EverBank is providing a $16 million construction loan, and the Florida Housing Finance Corp. awarded $9 million in funding.  Raymond James is syndicating nearly $18 million in tax credit equity for EverBank, and the Local Initiatives Support Corp. provided $50,000  for predevelopment work. 


author image Senior News Editor

Randy comes to Jacksonville from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, where as metro editor, he led investigative coverage of the Parkland school shooting that won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for public service. He has spent more than 40 years in reporting and editing positions in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Ohio and Florida. 

author image Senior News Editor

Randy comes to Jacksonville from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, where as metro editor, he led investigative coverage of the Parkland school shooting that won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for public service. He has spent more than 40 years in reporting and editing positions in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Ohio and Florida. 


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