New senior living center could be coming to Huntsville

An Austin-based developer is advocating for an affordable housing project for senior residents that would establish about 48 apartments in northern Huntsville. 

The Huntsville City Council on Tuesday gave unanimous approval to a resolution in support for Fish Pond LLC’s development at the corner of FM 2821 and FM 247, to receive benefits from the Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program. The program allocates dollar-for-dollar tax credits to developers to build rental housing geared toward lower income households.

“I’m sorry that it’s only 48 units,” Mayor Pro Tem Joe Rodriquez said. “We desperately need affordable housing in Huntsville, with new homes currently costing approximately $218,000 and a median income that is below our surrounding counties.”

The single-story complex, which carries an $8 million price tag, will provide high-quality apartments for residents over 55 years of age.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the median rent in Huntsville is $830 a month, but 34.4% of the population falls below the poverty line. Additionally, the median income is only $32,715 and as rents rise, many may be priced out of apartments or homes. Some may be able to find a studio apartment for $550 in Huntsville, but at the student apartments, a similar or smaller unit can run upwards of $1,200. However, in student housing complexes, the more people per unit, the cheaper the rent.

The tax credits are expected to be awarded on July 23, with the project expected to begin construction between Dec. 2020 and Nov. 2021.

The next scheduled meeting of the Huntsville City Hall is scheduled for March 3.