Success Stories

Vacant High-Rise Building is Transformed into Housing for Seniors

As a member of FHLBank Pittsburgh, Fulton Bank collaborated with the Harrisburg Housing Authority (HHA) to apply for an Affordable Housing Program (AHP) grant. The project was seeking a grant to help support an affordable housing development for seniors in the heart of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania – a property known as Jackson Tower.

The high-rise building had been vacant for nearly 13 years, and it took four years and $22 million for HHA to complete the renovation. To get the job done, HHA patched together multiple sources of funding, including capital improvement funds, the Public Housing Operating Fund and Community Development Block Grants. Together, HHA and Fulton Bank applied for an AHP grant, and the project received a $500,000 grant.

Senghor Manns, HHA’s Chief Executive Officer, explained that the AHP grant was significant to the overall project. “We used the AHP funds to install a private freight elevator that accommodates motorized wheelchairs and access for emergency personnel,” said Manns, adding that this is an important feature for a senior living complex.

The AHP funds were also used to add an insulated, energy-efficient building shell. “It’s doubtful,” said Manns, “that these enhancements would have been possible without the AHP grant.” 

Resident Jane West doesn’t see Jackson Tower – which now provides 159 units of affordable housing for seniors with middle-, low- and very low incomes – through the eyes of a bank or a housing authority. She sees it through the eyes of a hard-working, retired woman, a mother of five, and a great-grandmother of 40, and someone who says she is fortunate to call Jackson Tower home.

"This is very important,” said Miss West, referencing the development of affordable housing for seniors. “A lot of us worked all of our lives, and we don’t get a lot. We need some help, and we need to feel safe.” Jackson Tower, she says, does that.

Tracy Fletcher, Fulton Bank’s Vice President of Commercial Community Development Lending, said that safe and affordable housing changes lives for the better. “When we partner with FHLBank and developers like HHA,” he said, “we become part of the solution.”

AHP helps FHLBank members participate in the development of affordable housing in the communities they serve. Learn more about AHP.

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