Mixing up the housing market

Wednesday, March 12, 2014 - 23:00
New diversified housing development opens later this year
The Coronado Park Senior Village, offering 56-unit housing, will be ready for move-in this August. Applications will be accepted beginning in May. Hurry, though: Units will be offered on a first-come, first-serve basis.

By now I’m sure everyone’s noticed the tall, squarish building going up on out on Coronado Road.

It’s hard to miss it, since it’s one of the tallest structures around.

Geared toward senior housing, the building is part of Cook Inlet Housing Authority’s Coronado Park project development.

Established in 1974 by the Alaska Legislature, Cook Inlet strives to provide affordable housing and aims toward helping potential homeowners/renters move toward owning/renting without long-term financial assistance.

Tyler Robinson, Cook Inlet senior manager of development, chatted about the Coronado Park project at the Chugiak-Eagle River Chamber of Commerce on March 5.

Slated to open in August, the park will be made up of senior housing, rentals and for-purchase condominiums.

The project’s goal is to build a diversified neighborhood where senior and families can co-exist and mingle.

According to Robinson, the project site, which used to house the former Lazy Mountain trailer court, was initially approved for 323 units; the count has since been readjusted to 182 units.

“We felt it was more appropriate for the land and fit a little better for parking,” he said.

Situated close to downtown, the project will help revitalize the central business district and enable community members to walk to nearby shops and restaurants.

The project is made up of three layers: The senior village, 4-plex rentals and for-sale condos.

The total cost stands at about $16.6 million.

Coronado Park Senior Village, accessed from Coronado Road, is comprised of 56 units.

“We’re confident that we’re going to fill the units as soon as possible,” Robinson said.

The project offers a single studio efficiency (“leftover space,” Robinson said) plus one- and two-bedroom units, with 30 parking spaces offered in a below-ground garage; an additional 46 parking spaces will also be available.

The building will include 56 solar panels, to help with hot water demand.

“I’ve been told that this will be the largest solar project in the state,” Robinson said.

Construction will be completed in July, and residents can move in by August.

Applications will be accepted the beginning of May.

Robinson recommended that potential renters add their name to the project’s interest list as soon as possible.

“The first 56 income eligible and otherwise eligible applicants will get a unit,” he said. “What typically happens is that we’ll get 200 or 300 applicants in the first week.

Sixteen of the senior units will be rented at unrestricted market rates. The remaining 40 will be adjusted as affordable housing units, restricted to income limits of around $35,700 for one person and $40,800 for two.

Average monthly rentals will range from $710-$1,095, plus an optional $40 for a garage space.

The units are not in any way, Robinson stressed, assisted living. Instead, they’re constructed to keep seniors socially active and independent as long as possible, with features such as a community living room and a rooftop deck located on the second floor.

“There are some great views from these rooms,” he said.


Condos and townhomes

The other project components are the 28 4-plex rentals units and 98 for-sale condos.

Thirteen have been built so far, Robinson said, and they’re a mix of one- two- and three-bedroom units.

A private homeowners association will be responsible for maintaining the roads, sidewalks and open spaces.

The condos will sell for market value, which Robinson estimated at about $205,000-$279,000.

One unit has already closed on a sale, he said.

The 4-plex townhomes will rent for about $1,550 for a two bedroom unit with garage.

There are no maximum income levels for the townhome rentals, though perspective renters must meet minimum income guidelines. Applications are currently being accepted.

“We’ll try and be good neighbors, to the extent that we can. Whenever you do large housing developments, you aren’t welcomed with opened arms,” Robinson said.

“I hope it becomes a symbiotic deal.”

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