In May 2023, Resource Center of Dallas, a nonprofit focusing on sexual health, broke ground on a 84 unit multifamily asset in the Love Field area. Named Oak Lawn Place, the project is located at 5723 Sadler Circle (I guess Sadler Place was already taken). This comes on the heels of the Dallas City Council approving $5.4mm of gap funding from the city's Office of Economic Development (OED). Development is being run by Matthews Southwest (the developers behind the aesthetically similar Galbraith, another low-income multifamily development) with Spring Valley Construction Co. serving as the general contractor.
The unit mix will be 79 one-bed and 5 two-bed units, with all units designated as affordable housing for individuals earning 30-60% of area median income (AMI). Like most affordable housing projects, many of the sources of capital are government subsidies or grants:
- $5.4mm gap funding from the Dallas OED
- 9% low-income housing tax credits from the Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs
- A grant from the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
- Funds from the American Rescue Act granted via Dallas County
Additionally, Resource Center raised $4mm on their own.
Unlike many affordable housing projects, Oak Lawn Place has more requirements for prospective tenants than low household income. The community will only be available for seniors 55+ while "prioritizing the needs of the LGBTQ community". While the LGBT focus makes sense given the mission of Resource Center, it is unclear to what extent they can prioritize these needs given the 2020 Supreme Court ruling Bostock v. Clayton City, which states that sexual orientation is included under the umbrella of "sex" in the Fair Housing Act.
The project's five stories will feature a large outdoor terrace and, at higher levels, have views of Downtown. Amenities also include a lobby, community room, mail room, conference/dining room, kitchen, fitness room, and a business center. Pickleball was not mentioned, unfortunately.
Oak Lawn Place is projected to open its doors in June 2024. That day can't come soon enough, given the seemingly endless rent growth in the Metroplex. New supply, even as affordable housing, helps to alleviate the glut of demand that the area is facing.
In our current interest rate environment, developers may find it useful to acquire the skillset necessary for the intricacies of affordable housing. The government funds, even as loans as opposed to grants, drive cost of capital down. Given SOFR over 5.00% at the time of writing, the red tape may be worth it.